By Kim Jones, CEO, Curriki
Looking for engaging, interactive OER to help your students explore what makes a free society? Curriki has partnered with the Institute for Humane Studies to add 200 interesting and informative videos from its Learn Liberty program to the Curriki library. Learn Liberty uses hooks as diverse as a zombie apocalypse, Uber cars and Don Quixote to teach important lessons about freedom and democracy.
The new content creates riveting discussion starters for high school and college classrooms.
Liberty and … Zombies?
Learn Liberty’s thought-provoking content teaches students about freedom and democracy in new and often unconventional ways.
The videos have fun titles such as “This Professor Slays Zombies with Economics (and Guns),” which capitalizes on young people’s fascination with the walking dead. Here’s the description: “Presumably you’ve already made plans for surviving a zombie apocalypse. You have detailed escape routes, stockpiled weapons made for killing zombies, stores of food . . . or at least plans for these things. But have you thought through the important economic factors that might make the difference between surviving and losing your brain to one of the walking dead? This video provides a crash course in how a zombie apocalypse is likely to affect the economy. Hint: sell your designer shoes now while you can. And buy bullets.”
A sample of other titles includes:
- Specialization and Trade: Because We Can’t Be Good At Everything
- Academic Freedom: What It Is & Why It Matters
- 2 Simple Steps to Make a Difference in the World
- Are Entrepreneurs Modern Day Heroes?
- Are Millennials Actually Lazy?
America’s Founding Series
Social Studies teachers will be especially interested in Curriki’s collection of Learn Liberty’s “America’s Founding” videos.
The series launches with Episode 1: Why Our Founding Fathers Risked It All. When celebrating on Independence Day, do you ever stop to think about the incredible risks the Founders took when they rebelled against British authority? They were starting a war with the greatest military power of the time, when they did not have a mighty fighting force themselves. And they were fighting for a type of government that most people thought was impossible. Prof. Sarah Burns explains the importance of asking WHY they did what they did, as she will go on to explain in the following videos.
A short quiz follows each episode with just one quick question, such as:
- Why did some think it would be hard to create a democracy in the colonies?
- The cultures were too different
- The country was too large
- The colonies despised each other
- Democracy was never tried before
Go here to take the quiz and learn the correct answer!
The next five America’s Founders episodes are just as riveting:
- Episode 2: The Colonists vs. the British Soldiers
- Episode 3: Taxes and Abuse of Power
- Episode 4: The Ideas Behind a Revolution
- Episode 5: Is There a Right to Revolution?
- Episode 6: Creating a Country
Learn Liberty is a project of The Institute for Humane Studies (IHS), a nationwide nonprofit on the campus of George Mason University in Arlington, VA, that engages with students and faculty to encourage the study and application of freedom across disciplines.
Ifat Lerner, the director of the Learn Liberty project, says its primary goal is to encourage deep and memorable conversations among teachers and students about the different ways to approach global issues. By working with professors from a range of academic disciplines and letting them share their own opinions, Learn Liberty helps students explore new ways of looking for solutions to the world’s problems.
Kim Jones is the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Curriki. Kim is active in driving policy initiatives and is regularly featured as an honorary speaker on the impact of technology in education at influential meetings around the world. Learn more at Curriki.org.