Kohl's Broadens Its Cause-Related Efforts To TED


Like most retailers, Kohl’s knows that shoppers expect their favorite stores to give back, and the chain has long been committed to women’s health and children’s educational initiatives. The Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based company says its latest is a tie-in with TED, the non-profit group devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading,” providing $1.25 million to create a website teachers can use to build lesson plans around TED-Ed video content.

The TED-Ed channel, which launched about five weeks ago, has already drawn 2.4 million views, and the retailer says it hopes that teachers will use the tagged videos and supplementary material to use a new functionality called "flipping." That allows teachers to edit the materials and create lessons on a new, private web page, where they can then track individual students’ progress. Teachers can also incorporate any video from YouTube that permits third party embedding (the majority), and combine them with the material, and then offer lessons for wider distribution. The best of them will be made available on the TED-Ed site.



"'Flipping’" is intended to indicate propelling the spread of a video, but is also a respectful reference to the concept of "flip teaching" in which teachers can expand overall teaching time by assigning homework on video,” the company explains in its announcement. “Currently this is hard to do for many teachers, but the tools offered on TED-Ed ease the task and open up new possibilities.”

A full launch of the site is scheduled for September, with the start of the new school year.

Separately, the company, which has made breast cancer initiatives a centerpiece of its cause-programs, will host the "Wish for a World with Less Breast Cancer and More Birthdays" party next week. It says it plans to decorate Milwaukee’s lakefront with 8,000 pink cake pops, balloons and giant birthday candles, in an event meant to celebrate the cause. (In 2010, it committed nearly $5 million to the American Cancer Society's Midwest Division over three years.)

And finally, it says it is renewing its partnership with the Wisconsin State Fair and the Wisconsin State Fair Park Foundation, creating the second annual Kohl's Family Value Day, offering discounts to all fairgoers. 

Since 2000, Kohl's and the Kohl's Cares program have “combined to give approximately $47 million to support charitable initiatives in the metro-Milwaukee area,” it says. And in the past 12 years, its Kohl's Cares kids cause merchandise program, which sells plush toys and books, has raised more than $208 million to benefit children's health and education initiatives nationwide.

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