The fact that TED, Bill Gates, and the media love Khan Academy shows the failure of education. Khan Academy looks great because our country has reduced teaching and learning to preparing students to bubble in answer sheets for multiple choice tests. But if we shift the purpose of education from consuming knowledge and stating answers to creating knowledge and exploring solutions, the fallacy of Khan Academy “reinventing education” is blatently apparent.
Khan Academy can help students find the answer to this exercise:
But can it help students find a solution to this problem?
New playing fields are going to be built on the lot across the street from our school. Unfortunately, people will need to cross Route 121 (a 2-lane highway) to get to those fields. Currently, the proposed pedestrian crossing is a crosswalk with a flashing yellow light. Is there a speeding problem on Route 121? Do you think the proposed crossing is adequate?
Khan Academy works here:
But does it work for this problem here?
Khan Academy can show students how to do this:
But can it show students how to do this?
Khan Academy and iPads could make math classrooms look like this:
But shouldn’t math classrooms sound like this?
And lastly, take these 8 students from The Independent Project:
Is there an app for that?
As my students would say, “Don’t hate the player, hate the game.” Khan Academy is merely a player. We need to change the game.