Want a Glimpse of the Education Future? Time to Get to Know Khan Academy

A random Monday posting… First of all, let me clarify that this post has nothing to do with old Star Trek movies or even older Mongol hordes. If you are interested at all in the future of education but haven’t heard of Khan Academy yet, now is the time to start getting up to speed. Khan gives every indication of being at the forefront of entrepreneurial education transformation. And you might even want to be aware of the free learning opportunities the Academy offers now!

Today, Joanne Jacobs points to a California news story about Egan Junior High successfully using Khan’s online learning tools in the classroom:

Seventh-graders in the Prealgebra Readiness class have been working with Khan Academy, an online educational tool, since December – with winning results.

“Traditionally, these kids aren’t real motivated math learners, so to see them plowing through this – it’s really exciting to see them this engaged,” said Courtney Cadwell, the Egan instructor overseeing the pilot program.

Khan Academy is a not-for-profit organization with the mission of providing a world-class education to anyone, anywhere. The curriculum comprises more than 1,800 videos covering content in math and science, one concept at a time.

But we’re both behind the curve. Nearly six months ago Matthew Ladner suggested Khan Academy may be the way of the future — suggesting “people use Khan Academy to develop low-cost and high quality private schools.” He may be right. This 20-minute Ted Talk by former hedge fund analyst and Academy Founder Salman Khan will give you an idea of a real possibility for re-inventing education as we know it.

You are going to see me write more and more about “blended learning” and “hybrid learning” in the time ahead. While it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with Star Trek, Khan Academy is in a sense futuristic. It represents a key part of the transformational movement offering students a wider variety of effective learning options. Let’s embrace it.