TED Talks began in 1984 with the belief that innovative ideas in technology, education, and design should be heard by everyone freely. Nowadays, these influential talks can be found on YouTube by the hundreds and the topics of discussion range from all different fields of study. As it was in 1984, the topic of education is still a heavily discussed idea and speakers give their insight into the field of education and teaching. The following are by no means an exhaustive list of incredible TED Talks on education, but they do offer thought-provoking ideas about the future of education.

 

Sir Ken Robinson – Do Schools Kill Creativity?

Ken’s TED Talk delves into the history of public education and why the entire system needs to be revamped in order to properly serve children and engage their creativity rather than diminish it. He also touches on the idea that children are being overly diagnosed with ADHD across the United States because they are constantly being distracted by our world of distraction and have trouble focusing on “boring stuff” like school. The school systems around the world focus on the left side of student’s brains rather than their right and don’t encourage creativity outlets like dance and the arts.

 

Rita Pierson – Every Kid Needs a Champion

Rita has worked in education for years and knows the importance of relationships between students and teachers because these connections encourage learning, honesty, and motivation. This short TED Talk shows Rita’s positivity and passion for teaching influences students that need inspiration and direction in their lives. According to her, teaching and learning should bring happiness to both the teacher and student and the relationships built in the classroom will never disappear from the student’s lives.

 

Ted Dintersmith – Prepare Our Kids for Life, Not Standardized Tests

Ted comes to his speech from a completely different perspective than other education speakers because he was a leading venture capitalist for most of his career. He began focusing on education and his belief is that the entire system needs to change because the economy has been moving away from manufacturing and more structured jobs. The education structure was originally modeled to produce workers that were efficient and able to follow orders. It is Ted’s belief that those who simply follow orders and regurgitate facts will have a tougher time in the years to come and should be taught life skills instead.