Using TED- Ed: Creating Lessons Worth Sharing

Have you ever had a blog idea only to run out of steam after the first or second paragraph?  Me too. So, to prove (good) ideas don’t die, I found this blog that I started writing in 2014 after I attended Elliott Masie’s Learning conference.  So, I decided to pick it up and finish it in 2016.  Here we go….

“The central mission of Ted-Ed is to capture and to amplify the voice of the world’s greatest teachers”

For this blog, I am going to talk about TED- Ed: Creating Lessons Worth Sharing. First of all, here is the synopsis:

One of the largest shifts in corporate learning has been the use of open content like TED videos. TED-Ed is a unique platform that allows designers, managers, subject matter experts or even workers to rapidly build “lessons” around TED or YouTube video segments by adding content, context, engagement and even a few assessment questions.

What is Ted Ed?

There are two types of TED-Ed lessons. The first, TED-Ed’s award-winning original lessons, represent collaborations between expert educators, screenwriters and animators. Each collaboration aims to capture and amplify a great lesson idea suggested by the TED community.

The second type, which I would like to talk about, are TED-Ed lessons that can be created by any website visitor, and involves adding questions, discussion topics and other supplementary materials to any educational video on YouTube. Both types of TED-Ed lessons are used regularly – in classrooms and homes – to introduce new topics to learners in an exciting, curiosity-inspiring way.

It’s pretty cool and easy to setup.  You can login in to the TED-Ed site, create an account and begin.  Once you pick a video, it sets up helps you create a lesson around the video with 5 stages:
1. Watch: Yep, you watch the video
2. Think:  After participants watch the video, it allows you to create up to 15  multiple choice/open answer questions about the video or topic at hand
3. Did Deeper:  The instructor can have a summary of the video or points of interest they want to call out from the video.
4. Discuss: Invite users to discuss with one another on the video, questions or the instructor summary.  You can even bring in old discussions to this section
5. …And Finally:  Here you can leave your students with closing thoughts

And that’s it.  You can pull any TED video and create a lesson plan around it all in one neat and tidy place.

HR (Orientation) Assistance for Social Profiles

One example that social business advocates constantly tout the power of collaboration is an ‘use case’ of knowledge sharing and team productivity.  It goes something like Mark is working on a project (let’s say it Project Clowns), he looks up the companies ‘expert profiles’ and finds Tom who has tagged himself as “clown” (Tom, come on, I am kidding) and contacts him.  Tom then points Mark in the direction of Sarrah who was the PM on a project he worked on and Sarrah shares with Mark the project plan template (on SharePoint), lessons learned (wiki) and project tasks (Activities).  And the value of expert profiles come through for Mark where he does not need to re-invent the wheel.

Great.  But that is assuming/hoping Tom has tagged himself.  Because if he did not, my search on “clowns” would show up empty.  And I see the value of being able to connect with over 15,000 employees we have (though sometime it seems like we are only a company of 100 people).  But, how do we get people to add and update tags to their profile?  Well, here are my suggestions:

Orientation/New employees: part of the welcome package should be a requirement that they go and update their profile.  Really, it would only be 10 minutes to tag yourself, add a picture, add some ‘about me’ content.  This would be a great introduction to new employees to the collaboration suite, allow them to find people similar to themselves, read blogs,  and feel part of the Sun Life community.

Yearly Review/Career Goals:  Every year employees document their goals in Workday.  How about at this time, have a requirement to update/refresh profiles based on past year work (projects, eduction, achievements, etc).  This just becomes part of the process.  And thus, at least all profiles are updated on a yearly basis.

Anyway, if we truly want to be a social business enterprise, we will need the data/participation to leverage it’s value.

Give me my Status Updates…with e-mail

Every vendor (worth their salt) is now rushing out status updates products to catch the “Twitter Wave”. And that is great and status updates are a fantastic way to connect, build relationships, find people/content, etc.
But unfortunately, within the enterprise, e-mail is King (status updates are like the 2nd Prince from the throne). And if you want adoption for new software and change how people collaborate, you have a better chance going to a place where people already are during the day – their inbox.
I actually still know people who sometimes do not open their browser all day. And their instant messaging is running in their e-mail client. At least give users the option of having it there so you can reach a wider audience. That way, change is right in front of people. Make it easy. Make the change enjoyable. And let them make the change.

My Overweight Friend (aka – Reducing e-mail)

Here’s a story for you about a friend of mine who decided he wanted to lose weight. He told me that he felt like he was being dragged down by his weight and could not accomplish what he wanted to in a day. So, when I spoke to him last he told me he was off “to join a gym”.

I ran into my friend yesterday and I asked him how his weight loss was coming along. He was exasperated at the situation as he hadn’t lost one pound. I asked him what happened to his gym membership? He replied “I joined but I never went in to the place.” I asked him about what he had changed in his diet? He replied “nothing”. I inquired about exercise such as jogging, “No” biking, “No” walking? “No”. Now I was the one getting exasperated. I said to him “it doesn’t seem that you really want to lose weight”. He replied angrily “I do”. Really? He said that may he may not be changing his bahavior but “he still wants to lose weight.”

OK….so I might have made my friend up (I really do have friends…I do). But let me replace a few word above with a story below:

Here’s a story for you about a friend of mine who decided he wanted to reduce his e-mail. He told me that he felt like he was being dragged down by the sheer volume and could not accomplish what he wanted to in a day. So, when I spoke to him last he told me he was off to “participate in the organization collaboration space”.

I ran into my friend yesterday and I asked him how his weight loss was coming along. He was exasperated at the situation as he hadn’t reduced one e-mail. I asked him what happened to his community membership? He replied “I joined but I never went in to the place.” I asked him about what he had changed in his behavior? He replied “nothing”. I inquired about exercise such as posting forum topics, “No” blogs, “No” boomarking? “No”. Now I was the one getting exasperated. I said to him “it doesn’t seem that you really want to reduce his e-mail”. He replied angrily “I do”. Really? He said that he may not be changing his behavior but “he still wants to reduce his e-mail.”

So, enough with the lip service.  If you are ready to change your behaviour…then change your behaviour.