Khan Academy: A Great Resource for Numeracy Instruction
Teachers, tutors, students, and just about everybody are bound to find uses for The Khan Academy. The Khan Academy is a collection of 2000+ instructional videos/ micro lessons on mostly math and sciences. The Academy is a not-for-profit educational organization created by Salman Khan, who has has captured the admiration of Bill Gates.
I like the idea of using the Khan Academy as a supplementary resource for numeracy instruction. The collection of videos and the self-paced activities certainly don’t replace the curriculum and/or sound instructional strategies; however, they sure are handy to have in your back pocket. The big advantage here is a the ability to draw from the huge library of videos to reinforce concepts and allow students to watch and then re-watch the steps to solving problems. Students can access the videos from home and school using computers and mobile technologies. Some educators have used the Khan Academy to experiment with flipped instruction or inverted instruction. The learners watch the videos as their homework and then the following classroom period is used to practice new skills. The jury is still out on this one.
Melanie Little, mathematics teacher and VP at Douglas Park School, raves about The Khan Academy. Little uses the micro-lessons to review and introduce new skills and concepts. According to Little, the use of technology helps to engage her learners and shows them multiple ways of taking on math problems. “It’s like having another teacher in the room” says Little.