Which animal has the best eyesight? – Thomas W. Cronin

From TED Ed. Explore the incredible diversity of eyes and vision in the animal kingdom, and find out which creature has the best eyesight. — The animal kingdom boasts an incredible diversity of eyes. Some rotate independently while others have squiggly-shaped pupils. Some have protective lids, others squirt blood. But which creature has the best…

Why do cats have vertical pupils? – Emma Bryce

From TED Ed. Dive into the incredible diversity of animal pupils, and how the different shapes indicate the animal’s role in an ecosystem. — Peering into the eyes of different animals, you’ll see some extraordinarily shaped pupils. House cats, for one, are twilight hunters with vertically elongated pupils. Many grazing animals, like goats, have rectangular…

Why is it so hard to escape poverty? – Ann-Helén Bay

From TED Ed. Explore the paradox of welfare programs, and learn how they inadvertently reinforce generational poverty, and what we can do to fix them. — Imagine that you’ve been unemployed for months. Government benefit programs have helped you cover your expenses, but you’re barely getting by. Finally, you receive a paycheck— but there’s a…

Why is the Mona Lisa so famous? – Noah Charney

From TED Ed. Discover what factors helped Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” become the world’s most famous painting. — More than 500 years after its creation, Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” is arguably the world’s most famous painting. Many scholars consider it an outstanding work of Renaissance art— but history is full of great paintings.…

Can stereotypes ever be good? – Sheila Marie Orfano and Densho

From TED Ed. Explore the model minority stereotype, and discover how it became a label for Asian Americans and is used to enforce racial hierarchies. — In 2007, researchers surveyed 180 teachers to understand if they held stereotypes about their students. The most commonly held opinion was that Asian students were significantly more industrious, intelligent,…

The twins who tricked the Maya gods of death – Ilan Stavans

From TED Ed. Dive into the Maya myth of twins Junajpu and Ixb’alanke as they descend into the underworld to play the gods in a ballgame. — One day, twin brothers Junajpu and Ixb’alanke discovered their father’s hidden ballgame equipment and began to play. Hearing their vigorous game, the lords of the underworld sent a…

Why do some people snore so loudly? – Alayna Vaughan

From TED Ed. Dig into the science of what causes snoring, and how chronic snoring can be a sign of sleep disorders such as sleep apnea. — A leather mask that clamps the mouth shut. A cannonball sewn into a soldier’s uniform. A machine that delivers sudden electrical pulses. These were all treatments for a…

Can love and independence coexist? – Tanya Boucicaut

From TED Ed. Dig into Zora Neale Hurston’s classic novel, “Their Eyes Were Watching God,” which follows Janie Crawford in her search for love and agency. — Baritone thunder. Snarling winds. Consuming downpours. Okeechobee, the hurricane of 1928, forced many to flee their ruined communities. But for Janie Crawford, it inspired an unexpected homecoming. So…