All posts for “teaching”


We just published a new video that's for all the instructors out there. It explains Instructional Objectives in about 3 minutes: Highlights from the video: About This Video: This video tells the story of an instructor named Mariam. She learns to use instructional objectives to plan her lessons so that her students can demonstrate what they learn in a measurable way. It teaches: Why instructors need measurable results Why instructional objectives are important How instructional objectives... Continue Reading

Student Video: Common Craft - "It's Funner!"

Posted by: leelefever on October 11, 2013- 12:38pm

Topic: Common Craft Style

Categories: class, funny, student, teaching


One of the things that makes us happy is knowing that teachers and students have been inspired by our work.  A couple of years ago we started to notice videos appearing on YouTube that students produced in class and called "Common Craft Style" videos. There are now over 2000 on YouTube. Yesterday I was browsing the videos and saw this one, which totally made our day: Reading in email? Watch the video here. This is one reason we started offering our Cut-outs and teamed up with GoAnimate - to... Continue Reading

HuntingEnglish's Top Ten Explanation Tips

Posted by: leelefever on May 20, 2013- 11:54am

Topic: Art of Explanation

Categories: analogy, metaphor, stories, teaching


English teacher Alex Quigley (@HuntingEnglish) recently shared his top ten explanation tips: A few gems: 1. ‘Know what the students know’ when planning your explanation: All great teachers have an excellent knowledge of their students. This knowledge is paramount in pitching the explanation just right. Vygotsky’s ‘zone of proximal development’ is key here – the explanation should be matched to the audience: not too complex as to be unintelligible to the students, but not too simple or... Continue Reading
When people ask about the inspiration for our style of videos, I often say that our videos reflect the way that I wish I had learned in school. My learning style wasn't a good match for the way I was taught.  Recently we completed a custom video project with the Buck Institute for Education (BIE) that focuses on a Project Based Learning or "PBL", and boy did it open my eyes. I can now see that I needed teachers who put PBL to work. I needed to get up from my desk and engage. I needed to work on... Continue Reading

Steven Strogatz - Explaining the Magic of Math

Posted by: leelefever on February 23, 2010- 4:00pm

Topic: education

Categories: blog, math, teaching


I've always hated math. Since about the 6th grade, I've always felt behind and deemed myself "not a math person." As I get older, I'm realizing that part of my problem was how I was taught math. It always seemed like memorization and rules without context.  I never had teachers that helped me develop a passion for math or see the the magic in solving problems. I wrote about this experience here. Recently I learned about a series of thirteen blog posts that are meant for people like me.  Steven... Continue Reading