Tiking Back the Tok

AP World History Students Show Their Knowledge of Past Centuries in a 21st Century Fashion


It’s getting to be the end of the quarter. Stress is high and student energy levels are usually at an all time low. However, in one classroom, instead of opening up their books like usual, students are opening up the popular app, TikTok.

In AP World History, sophomores are desperate for a little boost in their grade, and Mr. Wike came through with the perfect idea to grant their wishes, but per usual, with a twist. The famed social media app TikTok has accumulated over 500 million active users worldwide, with 41% of those users being age 16-24. The app is currently the #1 most downloaded app on the Apple app store, and is obviously very popular with the high school demographic. Even Wike says he got the idea from his 13 year old daughter. 

“I wanted to give my students the opportunity to sort of explain different topics and concepts we’ve covered in AP World History but in a creative way,” Wike says. “And so […]  I just assigned them each a topic and they have to go and figure out a way to show that to me in a Tiktok.” 

With topics ranging from feudalism to contextualization, subjects cover the entirety of what the AP World History students have learned this year. The assignments are then graded based on ease of understanding, knowledge of the concept, production value, and an extra point based on whether it made Wike laugh.

Students had about one week to complete the assignment, and, once turned in, were uploaded to a website Mr. Wike made himself, and were judged both by the teacher, and the students. 

“I like the ones where they took a hard topic, and did something unique with them,” Wike said. “There was one on the Congress of Vienna that I thought was really good.”

Emily Sutter and Addy Fowler

“There was also one on thesis writing which was a pretty accurate representation of how I grade, and the feedback that I give sometimes that I thought was funny,” Wike says. “I just liked seeing people take unique approaches to whatever their topic was.”

Delaney Fredericks and Kylie Weeks

Not only were these TikToks funny, they also were educational to create and watch.

”I thought it was really fun,” sophomore Nora Rai said. “And especially watching other people’s in class, I feel like I understand  their topic more.”

In general, school work can sometimes get pretty monotonous, and the inclusion of more relevant projects, such as this one, really stands out in a student’s mind. And hey, who knows? Maybe on the day of the AP exam, a student will be writing a thesis statement and recall all the advice that one TikTok gave them.

“[This project] forces them to go and think about these topics in a different way,” said Wike. “And that becomes real helpful.”



Author’s Note:

To own my own shame… Here’s mine!

Emma LeDent