TED Conversations

Chris Anderson

Curator, TED


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Has a TED Talk ever influenced you? How?

We get beautiful feedback on how much people appreciate watching TED Talks. But as well as learning, has a talk ever actually changed your (or someone else's) behavior? Or led to something intriguing? I'm curious to get some stories about how an idea can have impact... big or small, significant or just funny. I may share a couple of the best at TED2011 next week.

Topics: ted talks

Closing Statement from Chris Anderson

Many thanks to all who answered. I found a lot of these responses really moving. My take away is that perhaps the biggest single impact of TED Talks is in expanding peoples' sense of possibility and thereby motivating them to get up and realize their potential.

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  • Feb 25 2011: Ken Robinson and Temple Grandin have profoundly influenced my life. They encouraged me to step out write a book on literacy and begin Pedia Learning. Our goal at Pedia Learning is to educate the whole child: physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual. Currently we are focused on literacy, the foundation of all academic pursuit. We publish books and curriculum that promote the respect of all types of learners, engaging student's strengths while strengthening their weaknesses.
    As an educator my reading methods classes did not prepare me to teach real students who thought differently from me. My sons, who were born engineers, could not read after finishing their kindergarten and first grade phonics program. Rather than labeling them with a disability, I saw their gifts and began to search for answers. I discovered reading centers around our country successfully teach children with "reading disabilities" simply by systematically teaching them the keys to unlock the English code. In this material I found the solutions to my own spelling difficulties and recognized its importance to logical-literal thinkers. With this systematic teaching they soared.
    Their younger sister is kinesthetic, She thinks while moving. I have learned to incorporate kinesthetic activities into teaching reading, while developing the auditory connections and teaching the logical system to our language. Because of Ken Robinson she is now happily enrolled in an intense gymnastics school and I value her learning there as much as her book work.
    In addition to writing, and beginning Pedia Learning, I have taught Logic of English classes for parents and teachers. Countless people come up to tell me "I wish someone had taught me this way in school. I thought there was something wrong with me."
    Ken Robinson's talks are so influential because they touch a deep chord within all of us. He encouraged me to step out to try to change education and make a difference in people's lives.

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