Crash Course: Awesome Videos for High School Topics

While I have already written a couple of posts about Khan Academy, I really wanted to come back to it in order to highlight some of my most favorite videos of all time, which happen to be from Crash Course.

Crash Course started out as a YouTube channel, which is where I first stumbled upon some of the videos, that now also has a Khan Academy page. From the main page, you can see that the topics are world history, chemistry, biology, and ecology, so this would most likely be a good resource for high school educators and not even specifically those working with English language learners, either. Each topic has a large number of short and engaging video lessons delivered by John Green or Hank Green. The visuals are stunning, and I have been very impressed with the content that I have watched (mostly from the world history course).

“So what?” you ask. Well, let me tell you why these are awesome. If you are a high school educator teaching one or more of these topics, you now have an excellent supply of supplemental material. Additionally, you can use all the features of Khan Academy to track how students engage with this content. You can use the videos to help you flip or partially flip your classroom and free up some time in class for projects, discussions, and/or experiments.

The only downside to these resources will be easily apparent to those of us working with ELLs; they are extremely fast paced, especially the ones on world history. Having said that, students can watch them multiple times, slow them down, turn on subtitles, and engage with them in ways that would be impossible with a lecture delivered in the classroom.

Take a look, recommend them to your friends, coworkers, and students. I find the videos highly engaging and amusing and a quick YouTube search pulls up a wide range of additional topics, including U.S. history, physics, anatomy, and psychology, which may (or may not) be available through Khan Academy in the future.

Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below.

About Tara Arntsen

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen recently completed her Master's degree in Teaching-TESOL at the University of Southern California. She currently teaches in the Intensive English Program at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. She has taught ESOL in China, Japan, and Cambodia as well as online. Her primary interests are communicative teaching methods and the use of technology in education.
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One Response to Crash Course: Awesome Videos for High School Topics

  1. Joan Wink says:

    I follow your work, and hope that we can meet at some point. I am sure that we know and love a lot of the same people in South Dakota.

    I worked in CA for 25 years, and now I am on a cattle ranch South of Faith…or, half way between Sturgis and Pierre.

    Thanks for what you do.

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