CERN scientists simplify space-time in 3 short videos

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Space is where things happen. Time is when things happen. And sometimes, in order to really look at the universe, you need to take those two concepts and mash them together. Space-time is a pretty confounding subject to wrap one’s head around, though, so we asked CERN scientists (and all-around super nerds) Andrew Pontzen and Tom Whyntie to break it down for us. Below, the full three-part series, complete with black holes, space-time diagrams and a load of wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff.


TED-Ed Club Facilitator on student individuality, academic freedom and global connection

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As we round out our first semester of TED-Ed Clubs, we wanted to know the answer to one big question: how are they going? So the TED-Ed Blog invited facilitators to share their experiences in this column, “TED-Ed Club Facilitators in the Field.” Below, thoughts from Jimmy Juliano, a teacher at Daniel Wright Junior High School who ran his first TED-Ed Club last spring. Look for more updates like this one in the weeks to follow.


What makes a hero? 3 TED-Ed Lessons about fiction’s finest figures

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The hero is one of our most ancient and beloved literary character types. Heroes come in many shapes and sizes, from the classic, godlike Beowulf to the modern, more human Katniss Everdeen. Be they epic, tragic, romantic (or even an anti-hero), these characters can tell us a lot about ourselves and the world we inhabit. Check out these three TED-Ed Lessons that investigate the history and breadth of heroism, and ponder the question: what makes a hero … a hero?


6-time TED Speaker gives presentation advice at TED-Ed Club Workshop

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Does public speaking make you anxious? If the mere thought of giving a presentation makes your hands sweat and your heart rate increase, don’t worry, you’re not alone! Many TED Speakers have stage fright — and some have even come up with a few tricks on how you might tackle it. In this TED-Ed Club Workshop, six-time TED Speaker Rives provides a few tips, tricks and cheats on preparing a presentation for those TED-Ed Club Members who are about to present their own big ideas for the first time.


The brilliance of bioluminescence: A TED-Ed Lesson and TED Talk pairing

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Did you know that there are animals that can actually create their own light? You’ve probably noticed this bioluminescence in the fireflies that might light up a park on a summer night. But there are also a lot of glowing fish and other sea creatures that hang out in the deepest, darkest depths of the ocean that use their luminous powers for survival, hunting and mating. In this TED-Ed blog series, we pair short, informative TED-Ed Lessons with longer, more in-depth TED Talks on the same subject. Today we ask the question: Which animals light up our curiosity?


How tsunamis work (in animated GIFs)

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Alex Gendler’s TED-Ed Lesson “How tsunamis work” gives a thorough introduction to the towering terror of tsunamis, offering a comprehensive look at the history and science behind these swells. Here, we’ve broken down how these waves form in a series of animated GIFs.


9 TED-Ed Lessons about cool (and creepy) bugs

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Bugs are amazing creatures — they inhabit the worlds below our feet, above our heads and everywhere in between. And while they tend to be small in size, they are anything but small in numbers: insects outnumber humans by the billions. Once you’ve taken a moment to shiver at that fact, remember that bugs can be a great source of scientific study, a key manufacturer of our favorite foods (including chocolate, coffee and honey) and, in many places, the perfect afternoon snack (more on that later). In this roundup, we’ll take a look TED-Ed’s best bug lessons, from the icky to the inspiring to the totally insane.


More than a click and a snap: Photography tips from TED’s Senior Photo Editor

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Do you put a lot of time into taking a great picture? Or do you tend to leave the heavy lifting to the automatic settings on your smartphone or digital camera? As TED-Ed Club Members around the world are busy snapping shots to document their experience, TED-Ed invited Senior Photo Editor Dian Lofton to host a workshop where she could share some tips and tricks to take your photos from average to awesome.


TED-Ed’s super summer reading list: 40+ books recommended by our educators

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Summer: it’s the season of rest, rejuvenation … and reading lists. TED-Ed asked some of our favorite educators and staff to weigh in on the best books for students, teachers and all other summertime scholars to crack into during the break. Whether you’re swinging in a hammock, laying out on a beach or still working 40-hour weeks, these titles (which run the gamut from art history to health to the classics and beyond) are sure to keep your brain stimulated during the warm weather months.


Turtle bites, solar energy and 400 hours of crochet: A very unique TED-Ed Lesson

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Every once in a while, a TED-Ed Lesson is animated in a way that leaves the audience asking, ‘How in the world did they do that?’ The Why aren’t we using solar power? lesson, written by Alexandros George Charalambides and animated by Ace and Son Moving Picture Company, is one such example. We sat down with Animation Director Richard O’Connor to untangle the labor intensive effort that went into this lesson on solar energy.