TED-Ed Lessons give educators the chance to build and customize lessons for students using an extensive video library

5 STEM-based TED-Ed Lessons to close out your school year


TED-Ed Lessons give educators the chance to build and customize lessons for students using an extensive video library

School days might seem as if they move at a glacial pace in the countdown to summer break. Some schools have already closed, while others have a couple more weeks left. Teachers who still have classrooms full of students can use TED-Ed Lessons to liven up these last days and highlight students’ different personal interests.

The TED-Ed platform is especially cool because educators can build lessons around any TED-Ed Original, TED Talk, or YouTube video.

Once you find the video you want to use, you can use the TED-Ed Lessons editor to add questions, discussion prompts, and additional resources.

Use these TED-Ed Lessons for brain breaks, to introduce new lessons, or to inject some fun and engaging conversation into your class.

1. Why does smoke follow you around a fire? Imagine: you’re having a good time around a fire when out of nowhere, smoke blows straight in your face. Naturally, you get up and move to get out of the way. But suddenly, the smoke is blowing right back in your face! What’s going on? SciShow explores the physics of smoke. 

2. The bees that eat corpses: Bees are quite beneficial little critters: pollinating flowers, making honey, and also… helping corpses decompose. SciShow explores the species of vulture bees.

3. Why don’t we cover the desert with solar panels? Stretching over roughly nine million square kilometers and with sands reaching temperatures of up to 80° Celsius, the Sahara Desert receives about 22 million terawatt hours of energy from the Sun every year. That’s well over 100 times more energy than humanity consumes annually. So, could covering the desert with solar panels solve our energy problems? Dan Kwartler digs into the possibility.

4. Iceland’s superpowered underground volcanoes: While the weather in Iceland is often cold, wet, and windy, a nearly endless supply of heat bubbles away below the surface. In fact, almost every building in the country is heated by geothermal energy in a process with virtually no carbon emissions. So how exactly does this renewable energy work? Jean-Baptiste P. Koehl explores the two primary models for harnessing the planet’s natural heat.

5. The most notorious scientific feud in history: After the California Gold Rush of 1848, settlers streamed west to strike it rich. In addition to precious metals, they unearthed another treasure: dinosaur bones. Two wealthy scientists in particular— Othniel Charles Marsh and Edward Drinker Cope— competed to uncover these prehistoric monsters. Lukas Rieppel digs into one of the most notorious scientific feuds in history, known as the Bone Wars.

Sign up for our K-12 newsletter

Newsletter: Innovations in K12 Education
By submitting your information, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Laura Ascione
Latest posts by Laura Ascione (see all)

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at submissions@eschoolmedia.com.

IT SchoolLeadership

Your source for IT solutions and innovations to support school-wide success.
Weekly on Wednesday.

  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Please enter your work email address.
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

eSchool News uses cookies to improve your experience. Visit our Privacy Policy for more information.