Khan Academy Steps Up Its Data Use

I've used Khan academy videos before but I was really inspired by the latest video I saw Sal Khan give at a TED talk with Bill Gates giving him some Q and A afterwards:

I decided to use start my own Khan academy account and play around after watching this and the news last fall that they made some major changes to their site. Apparently, they are also streamlining resources that will supplement common core standards by next summer of 14, so it's a good time to play around with this tool's potential. Some of the notable features:

Class progress shows mastery and areas of focus

1.) Class Lists for Updates and Progress in Real Time. I've used Pearson online for online learning lessons, but I would need to go through to see whether students have answered or not. Khan academy's interface gives teachers a easy one shot appraisal of skill development.

The red block indicates an area to work on

2.) Grids that track individual skills. The above is a snapshot on individual skills from individual students. Putting your cursor over each block tells how many times students attempted a task and identifies students for one-on-one help or enrichment.

Teachers can recommend practice in specific skill areas

3.) Recommendations. Based on skills, teachers can recommend certain videos or content areas that may help clarify misconceptions.

4.) Enrichment. The above student is exceptionally above grade level, but still struggles with some concepts. Based on her level of mastery, I can recommend activities for her.

With its very broad swath of math content, Khan academy is a nice supplement to in-class activities. It differentiates content for readiness and some schools are already using it full time. What the video leaves out is how the content helps students achieve those "higher order" skills, but I think the scaffolding works towards these nicely.

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