When I started down the path of going to college, online education was just developing. I speak to people almost daily about education, and I hear so often from people that they would like to learn more or seek more education. Today educational opportunities surround us, and one of the best places to learn today at no charge is Khan Academy.
Khan Academy is a non-profit organization and a place for free learning, for everyone, forever. It is a free tools for parents to help their children learn, and when you choose to learn there you are learning in a global classroom.
Khan Academy was started by Sal Khan in 2004 just a few months after he stated to tutor his cousin online in mathematics. Before starting Khan Academy Sal used the tools available to him, using Yahoos Doodle notepad to draw the arrows and symbols required to teach the complex topic of mathematics. Who could have imagined that this would turn into a global internet phenomenon.
Sal is not formally trained in education, he is however extremely educated and has quite a knack for teaching online. Khan attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, graduating with Bachelor of Science degrees in mathematics, electrical engineering and computer science in 1998, later getting his Master of Science in electrical engineering and computer science. Since he does not have a degree in education some have been critical of him, but you cannot argue with his ability to teach, but the quality of his course and the breadth of the courses offered is amazing.
Like man others, I first started to use Khan Academy to learn about mathematics, but the website offers a wide variety topics to explore. You can spend five minutes, five hours or five years learning at this website. You can pick up an interesting topic, set it down, and if you come back a year later the subject will patiently be waiting for you when you return. It is likely the easiest place to get a little informal about may topics like Art, History, Music, Mathematics, and even computer science.
This weekend I stumbled across a course they have titled “600 – 1450 Medieval Europe and the rise of Islam“. It was very interesting to me because it explained how Islam started, what a Muslims and why are the Sunni and Shia at odds with one another. You simply cannot turn the news on today without running into these topics, yet most individuals cannot really describe who these groups are and yet one quarter of the earth population are Islamic or follow grew up in a home following islamic traditions.
Here I will include an example video from this series, but I encourage everyone to follow links to the full course, the YouTube videos do not do justice to the material.
I encourage everyone to take a few minutes each week for learning, make it a lifetime process. a regular part of your journey. Education enhances your ability to understand the world around you. Have courage, find something that interests you, and start your own journey today. 🕶