Programs and space for creative people.

/ Freeman

Khan Academy

After more than 8 hours I’m 50% of the way through the Algebra mission on Khan Academy. I have also spent some time installing and playing with KA-Lite. While I’m excited by the potential of KA-Lite I’m putting less energy into it now because:

  1. it doesn’t currently have a sufficient number of exercises in Algebra to be interesting
  2. I have become a bit addicted to the Khan Academy metrics of energy points, time spent, and mission progress.

I’m using ‘time spent’ as my own metric to keep myself motivated putting 1 hour a day into it. Right now I am visualizing a ‘classroom’ where everyone is working on Khan Academy and there is a class goal – Game Time for everyone as soon as the class reaches 1,000,000 energy points. I would love to have a number of tablets up in a classroom displaying a variety of metrics. Total energy points for the room. Show someones picture / avatar whenever they get new energy points, a leader board, etc. Tablets are cheap, we can wall paper the bathrooms with them.

This is also taking me a bit further from the Learning X-Prize mandate which is to work in a completely non-connected environment. Given that my adopted geography is peri-urban Bangalore for which there is fairly reliable 4g internet available from multiple providers, perhaps our strategy should leverage this, and treat the disconnected state as an outlier.

From a programming perspective, I’m beginning to want more coach tools:

  • An API to get notified when a student receives energy points, or masters a skill
  • Get the total energy points for a class room
  • Show the student with the most energy points / progress