Now that online TED Talks have reached one billion views, it seems that everyone is sharing their list of their favorite talks. This got me thinking about the role that these short videos have had on my own life. I realized that watching them has opened new doors to me, pushed back against my views, and shifted my perspective on many issues. Here are my five most influential TED talks:
Will our kids be a different species? by Juan Enriquez
As a science educator and parent, this talk really opened my eyes to the possibility that technology could impact the speed of evolution, and that my children might be that different from my generation.
Aliens, love — Where are they? by John Hodgman
There is little that Hodgman creates that I don’t find mercilessly hilarious.
The 4 a.m. mystery by Rives
Possibly the funniest TED talk that I have ever watched, this one has impacted my own sense of humor and the way I use it in my teaching.
How to learn? From mistakes by Diana Laufenberg
Laufenberg is one of the awesome teachers at Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia, who explains here how failure is an important part of teaching.
Religions and babe by Hans Rosling
Rosling’s way of presenting data graphically is remarkable and it influences much of the way that I teach my students to create graphs. This is the most recent of his several TED talks.
These are the ones that changed my thinking the most. What are yours?