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A TED-Ed Club’s Journey to Breaking Down Classroom Walls

A TED-Ed Club’s Journey to Breaking Down Classroom Walls

by Josefino Rivera, Jr. English Teacher, TED-Ed Club Facilitator, and TEDx Event Organizer Asociación Escuelas Lincoln Buenos Aires, Argentina

“TED-Ed’s commitment to creating lessons worth sharing is an extension of TED’s mission of spreading great ideas. Within TED-Ed’s growing library of lessons are carefully curated educational videos, many of which represent collaborations between talented educators and animators nominated through the TED-Ed platform. This platform also allows users to take any useful educational video, not just TED’s, and easily create a customized lesson around the video. Users can then distribute TED-Ed lessons, publicly or privately, and track their impact on the world, a class, or an individual student.”

“This platform is also the home to TED-Ed Clubs – an exciting new program that aims to stimulate and celebrate the best ideas of students around the world.”

Lincoln joined this effort and began its first club in 2014.  The purpose of the club is to help students develop an idea worth spreading through TED-like talks.

In collaboration with TED-Ed, the club follows lessons and discussions provided by TED-Ed.  They join in international activities such as Twitter Chats about TED Talks on #TEDEdChats, “If I Ruled the World” selfies, and TED-Ed Connect Week where students discussed their talks with other TED-Ed Clubs around the world.

Asociación Escuelas Lincoln TED-Ed Club What’s Your Passion introductory video.

TED-Ed Club Lessons

TED-Ed developed a guidebook for all facilitators complete with 13 lessons, agendas, accompanying videos, and discussion questions.

Lincoln’s TED-Ed Club followed the lessons below as they developed their TED-like talks throughout the year.

  1. Introduction week: What’s your passion?

  2. What makes a great idea…great?

  3. Explore and declare your idea

  4. How to Present I: Understanding the beginning, middle and end

  5. How to Present II: Unpack, outline and frame your idea

  6. How to Present III: Visualizing your idea

  7. How to Present IV: Create (and then destroy) your visuals

  8. Bad habits be gone

  9. How to capture an idea: Video, lighting and sound

  10. Goofs, gabs, kinks and crossroads: A dress rehearsal

  11. Final presentations: Your idea worth spreading

  12. Watch your recorded presentations

  13. Upload and nominate your presentation

For access to these lessons, sign up to be a TED-Ed Club Facilitator.

TED-Ed Chat

On November 4, 2014, Lincoln’s TED-Ed Club Facilitator co-moderated a TED-Ed Chat on Twitter with Caroline Cristal, Programs Coordinator at TED-Ed about the short but powerful TED Talk by Clint Smith called “The Danger of Silence”.

A TED-Ed Chat on Twitter is a professional online discussion that breaks down classroom walls and allows students, teachers, and the global community to share ideas and dialogue with others around the world.

Roughly every 15 minutes, Caroline and Josefino posted quotes from Smith’s TED Talk and related questions that are connected to education.

By the end of the chat, there were 71 participants from 7 countries and 18 different states from the US.  Six colleagues and nine students from Lincoln joined in the conversation.  For a recap of the discussion click here.

TED-Ed Chats have several benefits including:

  1. listening to multiple, international perspectives

  2. sharing your expertise with other educational stakeholders

  3. extending pedagogical discussions outside the classroom walls

  4. networking with other educators

On November 15, 2014 Lincoln’s TED-Ed Club joined schools all over the world and participated in TEDxYouthDay’s Photo Challenge, sparked by the theme “Worlds Imagined”.  Students shared their ideas of what they would do if they ruled the world by taking selfies and posting them on Twitter with the hashtag #TEDxYouthDay


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From February 22-26, 2015, TED-Ed hosted TED-Ed Club Connect Week.  This event supported students in developing 21st century presentation skills — while stimulating and celebrating the creative ideas put forth by students from all over the world. In that week, more than 100 TED-Ed Clubs — representing more than 20 countries — connected online to share and build on each other’s presentation ideas during hour-long TED-Ed Club Connect sessions.  Lincoln’s TED-Ed Club conversed with Lake Mary Prep in the United States.


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TED2015 Livestream Viewing

From March 16 to March 20, 2015, Lincoln’s TED-Ed Club was given a complimentary pass to watch the TED2015 “Truth & Dare” Conference that took place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada via livestream.

The Aula Magna, a large theater-like classroom, was booked for the week, and teachers and students were allowed to watch the live stream during their free periods.  Some teachers opted to bring classes with them to watch, discuss, and analyze the talks together.

The culminating assignment for the TED-Ed Club was to take the talks they had been working on throughout the year and bring them to the TEDx Stage.

Teachers from the elementary, middle, and high schools along with administrative staff volunteered to help organize the TEDxAsociaciónEscuelasLincoln Event which took place on April 18, 2015.

During the event, the talks were professionally filmed and edited and now are a part of the TEDxTalk Youtube Archive.  In two days, students’ talks hit 250 viewers and the global conversation of these ideas worth spreading begins.


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