Brightstorm has launched a new online learning network for teenagers with video-based courses led by experienced instructors. The concept is rather clever as they use the tools that teens use every day such as online videos to deliver training and instructional materials in a very familiar format. This makes otherwise dull and tedious learning sessions more fun and enjoyable for teen students, which means they will be inclined to view more courses and take more classes.
The courses are presented in short entertaining ways with young attractive teachers (usually). This is another brilliant move because teens today have the attention span of a gibbon. This means that Brightstorm needs to present their material in a brisk and entertaining manner. They also infuse their videos with some level of levity and humor, which makes their material feel even less scholastic than they actually are.
Here are just some of the courses that teen can take: SAT Geometry | Algebra II | SAT Writing | SAT Math | AP U.S. History | AP U.S. Government | Writing | SAT Critical Reading | U.S. History.
The teachers are an integral part of the site, of course. Sure, some of them are young and highly photogenic, but don’t be fooled. There are plenty of good old-fashioned instructors on the site as well. While they understand that their videos have to be a little more hip and cool than what a traditional school would produce, they know they still need professional teachers that know how to teach whether it’s in a classroom or online via video.
Brightstorm has a Challenges section which allows teens to compete in fun contests every week and actually win prizes. It also allows them to see the work of their fellow online classmates and if nothing else, lets them express themselves in these multimedia projects. For example, in one challenge called “Music to My Eyes,” they are asked to create a music based slide.com presentation.
In the shows area, there are many more viral-like videos that also provide some level of information or educational material in an enjoyable format. For example, here’s “One Minute Hamlet” which shows a Shakespearean troupe rapping Hamlet in sixty seconds.
Brightstorm does a good job presenting course materials in a format that most teens will find pleasant and possibly enjoyable. More importantly, they can actually learn from these video courses, which is obviously the primary goal of the service. One thing is certain, Brightstorm clearly demonstrates that educational videos can also be entertaining.