July 23, 2023

Gregory Sampson: Khanmigo

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Gregory Sampson noted the quiet appearance of the next tech-based shortcutting miracle in education, coming from Sal Khan and Khan Academy.

han Academy, which began as a project by its founder, Sal Khan, to bring free internet tutelage to schoolchildren, then got in bed with College Board and the SAT suite of products (yes, that’s how College Board refers to it,) by providing a customized path of review based upon PSAT results, is now trumpeting its latest venture.

Khan Academy has met Artificial Intelligence.

“It does math although not always perfectly.”

One supposes the name is a combination of Khan and amigo, the Spanish word for friend. But this may not be anybody’s friend as one of its supposed benefits is that Khanmigo will do lesson planning for teachers. However, Sal should learn that lesson planning for teachers in most districts is a cut-and-paste job into mandated templates. No intelligence, artificial or otherwise, is needed for that. (Not saying that is real lesson planning, but it is what passes for it these days.)

Sal also tells us that AI is already embedded in everything that Khan Academy does, for example, giving hints to help students solve problems. He insists that the AI will assist students in finding answers and will not be a vehicle for cheating.

Ironic or fitting that the AI robot is using the CHAT?!

Sal goes on to claim that he is helping students emerge from the pandemic and connecting their learning to what’s going on in the classroom. To his credit, he does not use the phrase learning loss.

“What if, when writing a story, the AI works with the student to write the story, not for the student, but alongside them making sure the student is doing the bulk of the work but pulling the story out of them? Making it more fun, making it more engaging …”

And it just gets worse from there. Read the full post here. 

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