These brief video segments can be used alone or in combination, to introduce a topic or to spark discussion among your students. The video segments can be adapted for any grade level. Stream the video segments from the players below, or scroll to the bottom of the page to find downloadable QuickTime versions of the videos. These videos are also used in the lesson plan The Language Spark (Grades 9-12).
The Human Spark, Brain Matters
“Dr. Steven Pinker: Language Makes Us Human” (Please note this link will open a new page or tab and take you to a separate location on the Human Spark website. This clip is NOT downloadable.)
In this outtake from The Human Spark, Psycholinguist Stephen Pinker discusses the three things he believes makes us distinctly, uniquely human: language, cooperation, and technological “know how.”
The Language Spark
An excerpt from The Human Spark exploring the human brain’s unique capacity for language.
Downloadable QuickTime versions of the video segments:
(Note: To download a video, right click on the video title and click “Save Link As…’ or “Save Target As…”. On a Mac, press the CTRL key and simultaneously click the mouse, then save the link.)