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Mental Floss and 13 More EdTech Tools to Engage Learners

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NASA TV can engage any learner

Mental Floss and 13 More EdTech Tools to Engage Learners

By Joan Selby

Sometimes students are too bored to complete in-class or out-of-class activities, but teachers continue to hammer away with lecture, textbooks, and worksheets. Want to engage all learners? Try less old-school and a little more EdTech.

14 EdTech tools that engage learners daily

  1. BrainPump

The website features interesting videos on topics from psychology, space, chemistry, business, history, physics, technology, math, and more. You’ll love exploring the way science works in real life through videos like The Science of BBQ and Why You Get Angry When You’re Hungry.

  1. Quora

Whatever question you have on your mind, you can get your answers on Quora. This is an amazing community of experts, who are ready to share their knowledge and experience with the users. You can contribute with your own answers, so the platform will truly embrace your skills and intellect. Subscribe for emails and you’ll keep learning something new every single day.

  1. TedEd

At this platform, you can find lessons on nearly every topic you’re interested in. You can build your lessons around Ted talks, original TedEd material, and YouTube videos. You can explore educational material in the following categories: literature & language, philosophy & religion, health, design, business, the arts, thinking & learning, social studies, psychology, and more.

  1. WikiHow

I use WikiHow when I need quick and clear information about something, but the resource has much more to offer. You can find tutorials on how to do or how to achieve just about anything. A single tutorial per day will be enough for you to continuously upgrade your knowledge and impress your professors.

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  1. Khan Academy

Khan Academy offers full lessons free of charge. The material is easy to understand, but somehow it manages to grasp some of the most complex concepts of science. You can take an online course at your own pace. The interactive exercises are a nice touch, since they help you polish up the skills and evaluate your knowledge.

  1. Coursera

You’re already getting education, but no one is teaching you what you want to learn, what’s the solution? Coursera! At this website, you can find an online course from any subject. The courses are provided by reputable colleges and universities, including Stanford, Duke, and Penn. Whether you’re interested in programming, literature or neuroscience, you can always find a suitable course here.

  1. Reddit

People discuss everything on Reddit. Celebrities are usually the hot topic, but a student who wants to learn can dig much deeper. Check out the subreddits for self-education and higher education. Then, continue exploring the subreddits and you’ll definitely find tons of content from the area of your interest.

  1. Lynda

This is a platform that offers courses, but it’s not focused on providing dry knowledge that you’ll never use. Most of all, it’s focused on developing skills. You can explore the database of over 4000 courses in technology, business, and creative skills. The videos feature industry experts, so you’ll see how the knowledge and skills work in practice.

  1. Mental Floss

Sometimes you’re not in the mood for taking an online course. Does that mean you can take a break from learning? Not if your mission in life is to learn as much as you possibly could. Mental Floss is the ideal website to check out during such days. It provides quick facts and interesting articles that will keep your brain sharp.

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  1. Duolingo

Learning a foreign language can be easy thanks to Duolingo. You know how important it is to learn a new language not only for boosting your resume but also for discovering new cultures. Pick a language and the platform will provide effective lessons accompanied with exercises. You’ll be thrilled to see you’re making progress every single day.

  1. Open Culture

It’s the place where people of culture hang out. This platform provides content that satisfies your intellectual hunger. You can start taking some of the available free online courses, watch a great movie for free, or get audiobooks, eBooks, and textbooks for free. Language lessons and business courses are also available. All material is free, so you have no excuses for procrastination. Join the community of smart people and start learning more.

  1. Gutenberg.org

Project Gutenberg offers thousands of free eBooks for everyone’s taste. The point is simple: reading should be free. When you want to spend a day with a book, you don’t need to spend money on it. The website doesn’t require registration; all you need to do is land at the homepage and start exploring the categories. You’ll definitely find something worth reading.

  1. Unplugthetv

TV can be a waste of time. Only a few channels broadcast quality educational content, but who needs TV when you have this platform? It offers a random suggestion of a video you can watch instead of watching TV. If you don’t like the suggested video, you can click I want to watch something else, and the website will keep launching cool videos to grab your attention.

  1. NASA TV

Can you think of something more useful to watch? NASA TV gives you free videos on topics related to the International Space Station, solar system history, aeronautics, education, earth, technology, Mars, and more. You can also learn more about NASA’s missions. Whenever you have some free time on your hands, access this website!

Need to engage bored students? Start exploring these 14 resources today!

Joan Selby is a PhD student, former ESL teacher, and a content marketer. She also runs her own blog about social media and writing tips.  A writer by day and reader by night, Joan believes in giving a creative touch to everything. Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.

Featured photo credit: NASA HQ PHOTO Mars New Year’s Celebration (201506200013HQ) via photopin (license)

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Mark Barnes is the Founder and CEO of Times 10 Publications, which produces the popular Hack Learning Series -- books that provide right-now solutions for teachers and learners. Mark is the author or publisher of dozens of books, including Bestseller Hacking Education: 10 Quick Fixes for Every School. Barnes presents internationally on assessment, connected education, and Hack Learning. Join more than 115,000 interested educators who follow @markbarnes19 on Twitter.
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