You and your students can create instructional YouTube videos by using a digital camera that can record short video clips.
Most digital cameras take 30 seconds or more of video (Check your camera’s manual for the length for your camera.) Plan your instructional movie out like you would a real “movie” script- what do you say, what do you show, and what background will be seen? How will these do the best job of “teaching” or “explaining” the learning? Practice it a few times. Then capture it by changing the digital camera to movie mode and click. If you make a major mistake, then reshoot it.
Some hints for creating a better instructional video are focusing on a short burst of concentrated learning, limiting the movement, having a solid non-distracting background, having you or your students speak loudly and clearly (their outside voices), use close up shots whenever possible, using big easy to see objects, and using easy to see signs with large dark colored lettering. Most important, have something very educational to explain or show. How does this video help students learn the standard to the highest level of thinking?
If you did not include a title and credits, you can move the video over to Mac imovies or the PC Movie Maker to add a title (Make the title one that represents the content such as “The Underground Railroad in Ithaca, NY.”) and give your class credit (“Mr. John Brown’s 8th Grade Social Studies Class, ABC School, Norfolk, VA.”)
According to the YouTube Team, save your movie in “either QuickTime .MOV, Windows .AVI, or .MPG files— these are the most common formats and they work well within our system. We specifically recommend the MPEG4 (Divx, Xvid) format at 320×240 resolution with MP3.” Saving in these formats helps compress the movie to a manageable size. YouTube will not accept videos clips over 100 megabytes. Some cameras automatically save to MPEG 4 s0 check your camera’s specs. Some other programs that can help you compress your large movies for YouTube format are found on How to Put Your Camera Video Clips on YouTube .
Please share your experiences with creating instructional YouTube videos from a digital camera. If you share what worked and what did not, then we all can become better.
© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007