The Coolest Educational TikTok Accounts and Hashtags
These wildly creative teachers and conversations prove you can do more with the world’s hottest social network than create silly memes
Forget all other social media—TikTok is where young people live. Sure, the mobile app allows anyone to upload short videos of themselves (15 seconds is the ideal length) acting out physical memes; dancing, singing, or lip-synching along to an audio clip; or making creative very short films. But it has especially captured the imaginations of younger users all over the world. Recent data shows 41% of TikTok users are 6–24. And before the coronavirus pandemic, users spent about an hour on the app every single day. (One has to assume that the rate of daily usage has skyrocketed since quarantine measures began.)
Although TikTok content that tends to do well is dynamic, funny, and creative, that doesn’t mean users aren’t down to learn a thing or two. In fact, educational hashtags have taken off in the past few years, and many educators have launched their own channels to capture their students’ attention outside the classroom. From inside jokes about the school environment to encouraging students to riff on the curriculum to converting lesson plans into short video clips, the possibilities of TiKTok are endless.
We’ve gathered up some of the best channels and hashtags to inspire educators who want to launch their own academic programming—and get students to see teachers in a whole new light.
Mr. Holeman’s TikToks went viral when he posted a message pleading with his fellow educators to go easy on students, as their personal lives are often more complex than school staff know. Specifically, Holeman admitted he has let students sleep through his class in the past, as long as they’re willing to talk to him about what’s going on in their lives and keeping them from getting enough sleep at home.
Another educator known only by her handle, she’s an expert in American Sign Language and uses her skills as a theater educator to share content for the deaf and hard of hearing. Her TikToks have even inspired other users, including students, to use ASL in their own videos. And that makes total sense. A highly visual platform, ASL is the perfect way to say what you want over the app’s popular music clips.
This teacher, whose students range from second to seventh graders, gives regular book recommendations as TikTok videos, and she has only increased her content output since the coronavirus quarantine began. She’s even gone viral a couple times, joking about the challenges of distance learning.
If Mrs. Rahlf’s account sends you down a book rec rabbit hole, check out this hashtag. It collects memes about classic novels and plays for the enjoyment of anyone who likes to read. To get involved, English teachers of any grade level can always assign TikTok meme projects in lieu of traditional book reports. Since students are often hypercompetitive when it comes to creating TikTok content, it’s easy to leverage that spirit and ask them to come up with creative videos that uniquely address what they’re reading.
Here’s an online math tutor who uploads whiteboard lessons to the platform regularly, building his own brand while filling the platform with useful information. @thejaxtutor isn’t as experimental with TikTok-popular formats, and most of his content could just as easily exist on YouTube. But it’s still a useful blueprint for educators looking to get involved with the app.
This educator found a way to film herself in the classroom without filming and posting images of her own students. She simply sets up her phone to record her attempts at calming and quieting her class.
Teachers love making jokes about their subjects, and this middle school educator is no different (looking at you, math department), using TikTok to share punctuation jokes on whiteboards with her nearly 8,000 followers. She also used her account to interview fellow staff at her school before transitioning into distance learning.
History is the most popular school subject on TikTok, inspiring tens of thousands of videos that have been collectively viewed 113.4 million times. That’s a reach that an analogue history teacher could only dream of, and students are engaging with the material deeply enough that they’re producing jokes that need historical context to understand.