Name of AAPI FigureSal Khan
What is the person’s Asian heritage or ethnicity?Indian American
Area of InfluenceAcademic
Date of birth or time period11-Oct-76
How did this individual make a contribution to their field or to society/culture at large?Sal Khan is an educator who is most famous for his website Khan Academy. The website offers over 6500 free YouTube videos on topics such as English, Math, and Science. The videos are in a whiteboard-style where Sal himself would draw on the whiteboard to teach the listener certain topics. The YouTube videos have been viewed a combined 1.8 billion times, with some of the views coming from many students in Lexington. Khan himself also has publicized many of his ideas on education. He is an advocate for use of technology in the classroom, as well as talking about the downsides of too much memorization in classrooms, as well as the flawed grading system. Sal has appeared on multiple TED Talks, and was on the 2012 TIME Magazine Person of the Year.
Why did you choose this person? What about their story speaks to you?As a student, I chose Sal Khan because he has such a big influence on my academic life. The first thing I remember him teaching me was a simple way to add 2 like 7+6. Sal Khan simply told me to split 6 into 3+3. Now, 7+3=10, so the equation had become 10+3, which was much simpler than 7+6. Of course, he explained it a lot better than I did! Using other tricks that I learned from him, arithmetic became easier. I often am assigned to watch his videos in school. For example, my math teacher assigns his videos for a brief introduction to the next unit. My science teacher often links his videos as an additional resource. Sal Khan’s advocacy for technology sparks me to also speak out whenever I find something wrong about the school system, as it might improve the school life of me and my peers.
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Submitted byJaden Leung
City, StateLexington, MA