YouTube is gearing up to transform the way we learn…We are at the beginning of an exciting revolution in online educational content.
That’s the message that came across loud and clear at this morning’s VidCon breakout panel on education. In an overflowing room of well over two hundred conference goers, head of YouTube Education Angela Lin led a panel of five leading video makers in a lively discussion, that gave a compelling glimpse of the future of online education. And it was a future that didn’t feature too many conventional lessons or institutionalized videos!
As the panel included John and Hank Green (SciShow, CrashCourse and a gazillion other things) I was expecting a room packed to the brim with their incredibly engaged teen fans – which it was. An odd audience you might think for a panel on education. But this was a serious, intelligent and engaged crowd, eager to listen to the panel, ask questions and provide their own insight on online learning.
Joining the Green brothers were physics blogger Henry Reich (minutephysicsminutephysics), science YouTuber Brady Haran (The Periodic Table of Videos), Mike Rugnetta, host of the PBS Idea Channel and Vi Hart of Mathemusician and the Khan Academy.
What was notable was that these panelists are all a) successful online educators (extremely so in some cases), b) not formally trained in teaching (to my knowledge) and c) not representing mainstream educational institutions (not counting PBS). This is important, because there was no doubt here that the excitement and impact surrounding online education is occurring outside conventional educational circles – and in many cases leaving them standing. John Green talked about this emerging online education community as being “disruptive,” while brother Hank talked about a “new kind of learning.”