Why I use web video as a teaching tool

I stumbled across this 20-minute YouTube video of Khan Academy founder Salman Khan one recent morning.  In it, he talks about how he, quite accidentally, stumbled across the methods he and his site are using to revolutionize education. (If you're not familiar with Khan Academy and its impact on education, watch the video and find out why people like Bill Gates are contributing so much to this nonprofit.)

While I'm certainly not aiming (just yet!) for the scale of his accomplishment, what really struck me about his talk was how similar the genesis of Khan Academy is to Legal Office Guru's. Both sites started out as a repository for personal tutorials (in his case, long-distance tutorials he did for his young cousins who were having trouble with math; in mine, solving problems for current and former co-workers) done after our "day jobs."  Both of us defaulted to the "heard but not seen" instructor mode not due to some grand design, but because neither of us has a video camera. And both of us were pleasantly surprised to see others finding the content useful.

During 2011, this blog changed a lot. A new design went live in January. I started making longer (and more complex) videos after (finally!) getting some hardware and software upgrades this spring. And early this summer, I started doing more outreach to related blogs — becoming a contributor on blogs like Attorney at Work and Lawyerist.

And more change is coming. Stay tuned!

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About the Author

I spend an inordinate amount of my time playing with computers and attempting to explain technology to lawyers and law office staff. It's not always easy, but someone's got to do it.


Thank you for posting this video. It is interesting when Mr. Khan said, “your voice in my head” – which is exactly the type of learning that sticks. You hear your parent’s voice, or mentor’s voice, or a teacher’s voice when presented with problems in life/school/work. With all the hype about put videos out, it is nice to know that the visual of a person talking isn’t what is most needed. As long as they can see what you are talking about, they will learn.

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