KQED Education Launches KQED Learn, a Collaborative Digital Space for Student Inquiry, Collaboration and Media-Making

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Middle and high school students are creative, skilled technology users and they’ve integrated digital content and communications into their lives. Now with KQED Learn, they’ll have the opportunity to use a free, safe and flexible digital platform to support their academic activities, a platform that connects classrooms across communities, inspiring students to research, reflect and respond to timely topics.

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We created KQED Learn to address educators’ requests for an inquiry-learning platform that encouraged student voice and agency. By connecting media literacy, media making and inquiry, KQED Learn supports students as they learn to form, express and support their ideas. The platform protects students’

A Platform for Inquiry, Student-Centered Learning

KQED Learn puts student inquiry and student voice at the center of learning and students’ own questions contribute to the curriculum pathway. Bi-weekly, KQED Learn delivers a new topic and launch questions from Above the Noise, KQED’s youth video series. This series cuts through the hype and takes a deep dive into the research behind current issues. With KQED Learn’s Go Above the Noise, students watch the videos, read the accompanying articles and then join the discussion, using evidence from the video, article or other sources they’ve found to provide a written response to the question. They can comment on other students’ responses and collaborate on adding new sources and pieces of evidence.

KQED Learn also provides Investigations that give students the opportunity to further explore an issue presented in Go Above the Noise or other topics posted by KQED. Investigations are created for STEM and humanities classrooms, and require research and media making to complete. Students can collaborate with their classmates and with peers around the country by posting, rating and commenting on resources in a shared workspace.

KQED Learn enables students to post and share media responses they create in the form of videos, blog posts, infographics or podcasts to share with peers. Students also have the opportunity to reflect on their research and collaboration processes to explore what went well and what they might do differently as they continue to participate in the site’s inquiries and investigations.

About KQED Learn: https://learn.kqed.org/about-kqed-learn

A Central Role for Educators

To open KQED Learn for their students, all teachers need to do is complete a simple online registration at https://learn.kqed.org. Registered teachers have free, secure access to the platform and can read their students’ responses to posted topics and peers’ comments and collaborations. This gives teachers the ability to share and personalize curriculum and to support students as they build academic-level research and collaborative skills.

Robin Mencher, Executive Director of Education for KQED explained, “We created KQED Learn to address educators’ requests for an inquiry-learning platform that encouraged student voice and agency. By connecting media literacy, media making and inquiry, KQED Learn supports students as they learn to form, express and support their ideas. The platform protects students’ and teachers’ privacy and supports a range of instructional needs, from whole class projects to independent student work.” Mencher also noted that KQED Education worked side-by-side with teachers during the development of the platform. Teachers who piloted KQED Learn reported that students improved essential academic skills such as determining the reliability of sources, using evidence and citing sources, interacting online for academic purposes, reflection, interpreting and organizing media and data, asking good questions and producing multimedia projects. Participating pilot teachers also saw increased engagement from students who rarely participated in class discussions.

Teacher Resources

KQED Learn also offers a continually growing collection of teacher resources that include a Code of Conduct for participation, guidelines for helping students create effective responses in a variety of media formats, and rubrics for Go Above the Noise responses.

KQED Learn debuted on Thursday, March 15, 2018 at the CUE Conference in Palm Springs, CA. Immediate response from attending educators was highly enthusiastic. Teachers noted that they have wanted a platform to amplify youth voice, encourage collaboration within and across schools, and support inquiry learning focused on important issues, all within a safe, secure online community.

Teacher Resources: https://learn.kqed.org/teacher-resources

About KQED Education

KQED Education provides educators and young people with multimedia content, experiential activities, and professional tools to create learning environments of the 21st century by promoting civic engagement, creative expression, and problem solving using digital media.

About KQED

KQED serves the people of Northern California with a public-supported alternative to commercial media. An NPR and PBS affiliate based in San Francisco, KQED is home to one of the most listened-to public radio stations in the nation, one of the highest-rated public television services and an award-winning education program helping students and educators thrive in 21st-century classrooms. A trusted news source and leader and innovator in interactive technology, KQED takes people of all ages on journeys of exploration – exposing them to new people, places and ideas. http://www.kqed.org

KQED Learn Introductory Video                    https://youtu.be/EU1lClE35SY
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Breanna Gilbert
KQED
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