How to use the TEd-Ed flip tool in the classroom -

TED-Ed Flip Tool Updates & Their Call for Ideas

Ted Ed Flipping lessonA while back I talked about the many ways in which you can use the Ted-Ed flip tool in the Foreign Language classroom. I mentioned differentiating, innovative homework, lessons for absent students, sub lessons, and more. I had also mentioned it was a tool that had recently been launched and therefore undergoing constant changes and updates.

Well, almost a year has gone by and sure enough, Ted-Ed changed and it has features that you will surely like and enjoy. If you have not used the tool yet, these changes might just get you to try it now.


The TED-Ed tool updates

  • Multiple choice questions: it is now possible to also include multiple choice questions. Answers can be check as you go. When the answer is incorrect, the tool gives the option of retrying with or without a hint. This a a very cool feature, if you choose to get a hint, the tool plays the video right around the part where the answer is found.

Flipping classroom Ted questions

  • The lesson and questions can be edited: it is now possible to edit the lesson and the questions after you have published your work. Simply click on the little wheel below the lesson.

Editing Ted Ed flip lessons

Then click on the red ‘edit’ button on the bottom left. This little wheel is also the one you need to click to send the lesson to students via email, as it gives you the following screen (you will also be given the sharing screen as soon as you ‘finalize’ a lesson).

Sending Ted Ed lessons via email

  • Excluding questions: you can post a maximum of 15 questions (which I think would be too many). If there are questions that you do not want to include in the lesson, but don’t want to delete either, you can ‘exclude’ them and so they will not appear to students. This is handy when you want to differentiate. You can hide difficult questions for some students and include them for others.

Ted Ed flipping tool creating questions

  • Guided Discussions: you can now include discussions as one of the steps in your lesson. They have to be guided discussions (based on a question or statement). Students can reply within Ted-Ed just like in a discussion forum. This is handy because you may opt to send students to discuss and skip including any other specific questions about the video itself. The objective of the lesson can be the discussion itself. I used to send my students to a third party application to discuss the lesson, but now you can do it right then and there.

Foreign Language Ted-Ed lesson discussion

  • Lesson Stats: when you click on “Lesson Stats” you will see a detailed table of your students’ engagement with the lesson, such as the one shown below. You can download this table (Excel format) by clicking on “Download Student Responses (CSV)” at the bottom right.

Ted Ed lesson stats

If you then click on “Review”, you can view a specific student’s answers and then give them feedback

Ted ed flipping tool review


How to use the updated TED-Ed tool tutorial


How else can the Ted-Ed tool be used in the Foreign Language Classroom

  • General/global language instruction: narrated lessons of the foreign language basics . For example, I created this lesson on Cognates.
  • Literature: lessons to introduce books; re-cap chapters; talk about characters, cultural setting, plot; important vocab or expressions (like this one: Insults by Shakespeare). Students could also make their own lessons with opinions (then swap and learn).
  • Prepare for class debates: find a video, a short or a documentary and create open questions about it. Students can work through this lesson at home and come prepared to class to discuss and debate.
  • Videos and the Ted-Ed flip tool as ‘Authentic ‘Resources: use the Ted-Ed tool to create your ‘Authentic Resource’ (#authres) lessons.  Analyze videos, news, documentaries; introduce a concept/structure; talk about sayings; work on listening comprehension. The best part is that in one screen you see all of your students’ answers.


TED-Ed asking for Foreign Language Teacher ideas – Please Help!!!

I have some exciting news for the #langchat community and all foreign language teachers out there. TED-Ed is now looking into developing foreign language lessons and is looking for ideas. I am sure we can help out and come up with innovative ways in which this tool can be used by foreign language teachers and also come up with ideas for narrated lessons (such as the ones shown below).

Here is the message from Logan Smalley who works for TED-Ed.

Foreign language TED Ed

Probably the initial thought would be grammar, but if you give it a more thought, that is a terrible idea and it would be a complete waste of time. Why? First of all, because we are all trying to move away from separate grammar instruction. Second, well think about it, why on earth would TED-Ed want to make yet another grammar video on any language? Have you been around Youtube lately? There are hundreds of grammar videos there already and some are excellent. And really, if you are looking for an innovative lesson to incorporate into your teaching and you look into TED-Ed for ideas, are grammar lessons what you would like to find? I know I would not.

Therefore, I call for your kind help to gather ideas to share with Logan. I know that we can give him a great list and hopefully we will start seeing foreign language lessons that rock. And possibly soon, Foreign Language will be added as a subject in their list. And who knows, you might even be called to help create the first narrated FL lessons.

We all use different methodologies of teaching and we can all compliment each other. AIM teachers can probably come up with ideas to enhance their routines with the TED-Tool. TPRS teachers will surely find a way to use the tool to give some of their lessons a twist. PBL teachers will most certainly use this tool to give students an option to create. So please, won’t you write down your ideas in the comments section?

These are some lessons designed and narrated by teachers like you and I, and created by TED-Ed:


Finally, I’ll leave you with two questions to help out TED-ED:

  1.  If you were to use the tool, how would you use it?
  2. If you were to narrate a lesson, such as the ones above, what would you narrate using the Target Language and for a foreign language class?

4 Responses to TED-Ed Flip Tool Updates & Their Call for Ideas

  1. Katherine March 18, 2013 at 6:18 am #

    Hi Emilia, what a great post! It’s really gotten my creative juices flowing. One idea I have would be to jigsaw a complex topic. In one of my intermediate classes, students learn about Spanish history. It’s unfortunately a long and difficult unit to teach and the kids don’t love it. But your post got me thinking: students could choose a major Spanish landmark, such as the Alcázar of Segovia, the Mezquita of Córdoba, or Madrid’s Plaza Mayor, do some research and create a video guide to the landmark for their classmates in which they explain its historical significance. Our school also has an exchange with a school in Spain; maybe the videos could be used as pre-excursion background prep for the students who go on the exchange. What do you think?

    • Emilia Carrillo March 18, 2013 at 6:29 am #

      Hola Katherine,

      Thanks so much for your comment and your idea. I think it would be a great way to use the tool. I am sure students would really enjoy it. They could create the video and then the lesson around it, and swap so that other students can then go through the lessons and learn about other places.


  2. Elena Yoo March 18, 2013 at 11:09 pm #

    Aloha Emilia,

    I really enjoy your blogs! I really think technology is a key (not the total solution, of course) for WL education.

    I used Ted-Ed several times and then switched to where I could embed other widgets, such as Quizlet (for vocabulary practice) and upload PDF files (chart, quizzes, grammar notes, etc.) for my flipped class activities. Although I still has flaws of its own, the site allows me to track my students’ activities (exact time and duration) and quiz scores if you have them register in your class, as well. It’s been helping me with evaluation. Hope it helped. Arigatou (thanks in Japanese)!

    • Emilia Carrillo March 18, 2013 at 11:21 pm #

      Hola Elena,

      Thanks so much for your comment and feedback.

      PS: did you know on TED-Ed you can now track student responses and give them feedback all on one spot?