Open Education

Edutainment

This week’s topic is Edutainment. How can we educate an audience at the same time keep them amused? I believe this can be achieved by making a creation that is  exciting, relevant, and FUN! It should be a good mix of stunning imagery that tell stories.  Coupled with audio such as a clear narration and music that is suitable to the story. Some good examples of educational entertainment are TV shows such as Planet Earth, National Geographic, Sesame Street and Magic School Bus.  They are so entertaining,  we almost always forget that we are learning.

The internet is a gateway to other forms of educational entertainment. On YouTube alone there are numerous to choose from. Channels such as VSauce, GCP Gray, Smarter Every Day, Sci Show are just a few examples. They also utilize audio and video but most rely on digital animation to enhance their presentation. These are fun ways to learn tidbits of new knowledge or facts.

And then there is radio, more accurately digital audio files or podcasts. This form of edutainment are increasing in popularity. This is purely audio so a really good storytelling is essential.  I believe some of our favorites podcasts do just that. They are: Invisibilia, a show about invisible forces that control human behavior and 99% Invisible a show about all the thought that goes into the things we don’t think about.  And last but not the least is my favorite of all, not sure this is made for educational purposes but I think we can learn a lot from the experiences of others. The show is called How I Built This. It is a show about entrepreneurs, innovators and founders of some well known companies and brands.  In the show they share their stories of success and failures.  A few of my favorites were on Sara Blakely creator of Spanx, Herb Kelleher the co-founder & ex-CEO of Southwest Airlines. In reality all the show’s guests are really inspiring and have amazing stories to share. Do give it a listen.

There really is no shortage of educational  entertainment, it is finding one that suits our tastes and interests that could be a challenge.

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