Archive for the 'Video' Category

Using Technology to Prepare Student to Do Well on Finals

We want our students to do well on the class final, department final, school district final, state final or national final.  However, often it is not what our  students know but how they will be tested that determines their grade.

Here are some techniques to use technology to help prepare students for finals so that they can perform well.

1) Give them self-correcting online assessments that mimic  parts of the final.  For example, students can do  several reading comprehension passages  in a program like Quia.  The program instantly tells them whether they are right or wrong. You can build in hints/strategies so that the students can learn  how to get the answer correct such as “Answer the question word ‘Where’ with a place.”

2) Have a wiki where students can post comments on their strategies for doing well in  each section of the test. One student might write “(For the reading passage) I underline the question word in the question and then I underline the answer in the passage.”

3) Have a texting-based program for the class where anyone can text questions as they do  final practice activities. Other students can explain how to get the answer.  For example, one student texts  “Can’t figure out the answer to ‘When do they go to the movies?”‘ since no time is given. and another student responds, “After eating supper tells when something happens; after is a time word.”

4) Use a Power-Point like program that not only quizzes students but then sends them to appropriate online resources if they have incorrect answers.  For example, if students incorrectly identify a math problem, the PowerPoint shows them to a math video explaining that concept.

5) Identify the most common errors that students will make on the learning goals in the final and have the students, in groups, prepare a short one to two minute video explaining those concepts.  They can make these videos not as full explanations but as cheat-sheet videos in which they emphasize the most critical parts.  For example,  Spanish students may review how to ask questions in the preterite tense in the “you” form and how to answer them in the “yo” form and they may review the most common verbs such as “to go” to get ready for a speaking final. They can post these on the school server so that other can access the videos whenever they want.

6)  Use a QR code to send them to a Google Form short 5-10 item quiz based on a final test section.  As soon as the students finish the mini-quiz, show them the class (not individual) results and go over, in class, strategies to overcome  the common mistakes that students made.

Do you know now how your students will do on the final?  Use technology to assess them and help them improve.

I have 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking/fluency activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook   Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students,   Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment  Successful, and  Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

Why Cell Phones and Smart Phones Differ from Previous School Technology

Cell phones and Smart phones differ drastically from previous school technology.

1.  The students know how to use these technologies. They use them daily. They text, they take pictures and send the pictures, they take videos/movies and send them, and they access the web. Teachers do not have to spend class time in teaching students the new technologies. Even when teachers “teach” a new program such as Yodio, the students already know how to take pictures, upload them to a program, know how to record their voice and how to send their voice files. Teachers save all the time they used to spend in teaching how to use a new technology which often was many days.

2.  The students always have these mobile learning devices with them. They may forget their notebook. They may leave their textbook home. They may be without a pen. Their dog may have eaten some critical papers. They may have lost their password onto the class website. However, they will have their cell phone or Smart phone with them.

3. The students can use their own mobile learning devices. The school does not have to provide it except possibly for a few disadvantaged students. Teachers can do lessons regardless of the various types of mobile learning devices (the various companies that produce the phones) and of the various carriers. The school does need to provide access to the school’s wireless.
4. With QR codes, students can be a click away from learning resources. Students do not have to turn on a computer, log in, and then type in a web address. Many students have trouble typing in a web address even when the web address has been shortened. The student instantly go from scanning in the QR code to clicking on the link(s). Class learning time is saved.
5. Students can easily be producers of information. They can take pictures to document environmental concerns in their community and make those into a multimedia story such as with Yodio. They can audio record the interview of various people as they talk about the importance of math in their careers. The students can make a movie about the various healthy habits of their family and friends for their physical education course. They have these tools on their phones and they know how to use the tools.

6.  Due to the richness of  web resources, teachers can move students to higher level thinking. Students can easily contrast two images of the same incident for an English class. They can evaluate the bias in reporting the same story as they read newspapers from around the globe in a Social Studies class.

7.   Students can be global in their learning.  Texting can be done  internationally. Students can text a science survey about using paper in school  to their friends in other states and other countries.  Elementary students can text math word problems  which students in other countries have written in terms of things in their country. For example, a school in Costa Rica migh offer this problem, “If you are really hungry and you buy a “casado” (rice and meat dish) for 2,500 colones and a fruit drink for 400 colones, how much do you spend? What is that in USA money?

Ideas Worth Spreading TED

Covey wrote about the need to sharpen our saw. TED certainly sharpens our mental saw.  TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading.  We learn from the passionate speakers at TED.   TED allows us to enter new worlds of thinking; we can  think bigger, think in new ways and make more connections.   TED speakers cover diverse topics such as  the world’s best whistler, the sound of the universe, the birth of a baby’s word, mesh, saving streams and rivers, using art to turn the world inside out, printing a human kidney, the new feminism, curating humanity’s culture, etc.  TED does reignite wonder!

If you have not visited  the TED website or have not watched a TED video recently, go and watch any of these under 20 minute videos.  Pick a video at random.

I’ve started a sharpening-the-saw regime of watching one random TED video a day. I daily share insights from these videos with family and friends.  From watching TED videos, my little world of thought become bigger!

Will  you enlarge your world of thought through TED?

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Backward/inverted Teaching and Formative Assessment

The Journal Recently ran an article on backward or inverted teaching where the instructor has the students watch a teaching video as homework and then in class they go over problems and the teacher does more one-on-one work with students.

As the students watch the 30 minute  instructional video, who is checking to see if they are comprehending  the video? Are there self-checks built into the video? What happens if a student gets lost at the beginning?  What happens if a student does not understand a major concept?  The students  have to wait until the class for which they will have to do homework.

Such backward teaching seems to go against the current formative assessment approach of constantly monitoring students and helping them to overcome the learning gaps that appear as the lesson develops.  According to formative assessment, students should be helped with their  learning gap as soon as it appears; the students are immediately diagnosed and given appropriate feedback to overcome the gap. The longer the time between the gap and the feedback, the less effective the feedback.

I think that backward teaching can be done well  if appropriate formative assessments are built in just after new concepts or ways of thinking are introduced in the video. Probably a video teacher does not want to go more than ten minutes without doing a check-in on the students.  The teacher might want to go over commonly made mistakes as he/she presents the lesson.  When students know they are “right”, they feel more confident about their learning. When they begin to have doubts, they learn less.

How do you use teaching videos/clips in your class?

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Digital Age Assessment: Learning in Web 2.0 (NECC 09)

How do we assess  students’ learning in these in Web  2.0 environments? We want to go beyond assessing the mere mechanics of using these tools; unfortunately, most current rubrics for Web 2.0 learning devote only a minuscule amount (usually 16% or less) to actual student academic learning. We want to refocus our assessments to reflect the students in-depth and comprehensive standards-based learning and the 21st Century Skills.

Change Web 2.0 assessments to assess standards-based learning and 21st Century learning!

With minor changes, the following assessments can be modified for any Web 2.0 tool.

Pre-assess your students’ Web 2.0 projects to raise the academic learning and 21st century skills.

The following are  “rubrics” that assess  standards-based learning and 21st century skills.

Wiki/Blog

Images/Photo/Flickr

Video/YouTube

Podcast

Social Bookmarking

Twitter

Videoconferencing

General Assessment: Prensky’s 21st century skills

General Assessment: enGauge’s 21st century skills

General Assessment: Partnership for 21st century skills

I welcome your reaction to these assessments as we try to help students improve in their academic content and develop 21st century skills.

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Students, is available through Eye-on-Education.

Reponding to Your Students

Your Students’ Videos:Learning from YouTube examples

Video One or Many

A friend who has written over 20 books indicates that fewer people are turning to books for information; many turn to YouTube. They want to watch and hear about topics. He has watched numerous YouTube videos about his topic and has found that most are severely lacking content. He says that the creators seem to have only a very basic (at best) knowledge of the topic and yet they are creating videos that hundreds are watching. Furthermore, he adds that the creators seem to lack a sense of how this small part fits into the bigger view of the topic. To teach a complex skill takes a multitude of videos and yet the creators have only done a few basic ones which means the viewers cannot proceed in this skill. In addition, they have not presented the information from an experienced view of what to do and what not to do in the topic.

What type videos or podcasts do your students produce? Do they display in-depth knowledge of the topic? Do they produce several videos that take the viewer from the lower levels to the complex levels of thinking about the topic? Do they help the learners to avoid learning pitfalls in the topic? Do they scaffold the learning so that all can succeed? Do they take the learners to the bigger view of the topic?

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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Getting Students To Research a Topic Through YouTube Video

YouTube

Although we can talk about a topic that we want our students to research, debate, agree/disagree with, do a documentary on, etc., we can motivate them by showing them a YouTube video about the topic. For example, you can show them the video, Spanish is Texas town’s official language, for motivation. Students can listen and write down the major points of both sides.
Then they can research this topic and related ones (Should some towns in Peru have Quecha as their official language although Spanish is the national language? How has Canada dealt with two languages both being the official language?) They can do Internet research, find other YouTube videos to support their side, interview people in person or electronically (email, IM, Skype, videoconferencing, etc.). They can present their factual and emotional evidence to support their view through PowerPoint, other YouTube videos, actual live interviews, their own YouTube video about the topic, a podcast, etc. English students and Social Studies students who hate to write an essay will eagerly do this assignment and then they can write it up in the state-rubric essay writing format.

One advantage of using a YouTube video is that the students can replay the video as often as they want to make sure that they understand the arguments on both sides. They can even style their response in the same or a similar format. They have the scaffolding of the video to help them as they check their information against the video.

How do you use YouTube to help students with their research?

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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YouTube Video Creation Reflection- Vocabulary

Here are my reflections on uploading a YouTube video that I made on teacher exercises to improve vocabulary in English, ESL, and World Languages. http://www.youtube.com/v/bZ6OJgC4JCM

It took time to find and or create images. The longest time was to find the Flickr images of fruits and vegetables under the Common License, probably about 8 minutes.

I used the free Gliffy to create the concept maps.

It was hard to find crisp examples that would clearly demonstrate the strategies; I had some but others I had to figure out.

I put the presentation in PowerPoint (really Open Office’s Presentation software) so that I could easily go from screen to screen. I used a very large font size so it could be easily seen. I kept the mouse on the extreme right side of the screen.

The presentation starts with a title, author, and contact information screen.

I used a camera stand to avoid the jiggling that my earlier video English essay had. It took a few minutes to get the computer screen to be in the digital camera’s screen- I had to use the zoom in, move the stand, etc.

I had to be very close to the camera and speak in my outside voice to make sure my voice would be recorded. I recorded it inside to avoid extraneous noises. I turned off all possible noise making things (air conditioner, cell phone). The last time I had recorded the Spanish Direct Object outside and you can hear the air conditioner and other noises.

I decided to both say and show the words (strategies) so it took longer than I had planned.

I did have to redo it since I mixed it up what I was reading one of the last screens. I knew it was quicker to redo it than to have to edit it. My camera held both the original and the second movie version.

It took about 27 minutes to upload a 2:31 .mov formatted movie.

I found it difficult to tag this since it covers so many subjects – English, ESL, and World Languages. I know that most World Language teachers will search by their language such as Spanish and not World Language. I was not sure how to tag it to indicate beginning vocabulary.

It takes YouTube about from one hour to seven hours to process the video once it is uploaded depending on the traffic on YouTube. Mine took about 40 minutes.

I just got to see the video and realized that the camera was not straight on so that some of the words are not easily read. I showed it to some other people and they like that I supplied the words and have a specific example of each.

Let me know your reaction about the content and what could be done to make it better without going Hollywood 🙂

I challenge you to put up a YouTube or TeacherTube video during the summer. Let’s try for 300 videos before school starts.

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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Making YouTube Videos From the Digital Camera- Lessons Learned

YouTube

Usually you can take a movie directly from your digital camera and upload it directly to YouTube type programs. Check on how your camera save movies. The formats of .mov/ .avi work fine.

The following will make your YouTube movie work better:
Have strong solid content
Storyboard what the camera will see and hear
Practice it several times
Have a visual or an oral introduction to the topic
Have all your props ready and in their correct order
Use close ups whenever possible to focus on the objects or actions
Have a solid color non-distracting background
Avoid background noises
Speak loudly and clearly
Keep all actions focused on the learning standard, not on comic relief
Keep the camera movement steady even if you are moving the camera
If your first try does not work, do it again. It is easier to reshoot than to edit it.
Learn from your mistakes and make each video better.
Have each group in the class make an instructional video about the topic

What have your learned from doing a YouTube type video?

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

YouTube Instructional Videos- Let’s Improve Them!

Golden Star

Last night I watched On the Lot in which amateur movie makers have one minute to show their story. I’m fascinated by how much can be told in a minute. Look at the story that commercial tells – some in fifteen seconds. When I compare these videos to a multitude of teacher and student made YouTube-ish videos, I notice several startling differences.

Videos get you into the story immediately. Many teacher and student videos take a long time before we even know what the story is (other than the title). Music plays for 15 seconds and then a title slide appears. In another video 1/7 of the total time was in a song which had nothing to do with the teaching part of the video.

Videos get to the critical part of the story quickly. Many teacher and student videos describe what they are doing without telling what the students are learning. “We had fun doing this experiment. We opened the rocks……..” So what did “we” learn? Have students tell more about the important part (learning) than the description part (actions). Have teachers focus more on explaining what the experiment did what it did.

Videos do not repeat the same story over and over. Many teacher and student videos have groups of students saying the same thing. We do not need to hear five groups each saying “We had fun doing this experiment. We opened the rocks……..” Either have each group say something very different or only show one group.

Videos use close ups to show the details of something important. Many teacher and student videos use the same type shot for a group of students as for a critical object. Get in close. Let us see it clearly.

Videos do not include distractions. Every shot contributes to the purpose of the video. Students running around for the comedic value distracts from the learning. Videos showing all of the room are not important in a learning video about chemistry. Use a non-distracting background. Bring in a solid color sheet and drap it over things to create a quick non-distracting background

Videos focus on their purpose. If the stated purpose is for students to show how well they learned a certain letter like “D,” then there should be a multitude of clips of “D” things. Otherwise the video is just a glorified album of class pictures. Make sure your video is an instructional video. What will others know or be able to do after watching your video? I felt that after most videos, if I imagined myself a student, I knew nothing new nor could I do something. INSTRUCTIONAL video.

Videos let you hear the speakers. Have students and teachers speak loudly and clearly. Keep the background music soft so that the speakers can be easily heard. Do not include copyrighted music. Have the rest of the class keep quiet so their talking is not distracting. “Silence please. We are recording.”

Videos uses visuals effectively. Video visuals give information. Do not just talk, rap, or sing, show the information in visuals as well. Use arrows, signs, and other visuals to emphasize the information. 4×6 sticky-notes with large letters can be effective labels. Each visual moves the story along.

All of the previous suggestions are based on watching teacher/student videos.

Please plan out instructional videos so that other teachers and students can learn new concepts and can do new actions as a result of your video. Only upload instructional videos, not “here is our class” or “watch us goof off” types of videos.

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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TeacherTube: A Good Start

TeacherTube

An educational version of YouTube is TeacherTube-Teach the World. It was launched on March 6, 2007 and its stated purpose is to share instructional videos.

I did some searches:
Science experiment – 1
Science – 25 (9 are made of students telling about an experiment)
Civil War – 6
English – 25 (Many are ESL)
Poetry -18
Math -25
Spanish – 23 (Some for learning Chinese, some commercial websites)

Some things that TeacherTube could do to improve:

— Spread the word so that more educators contribute to it and use it.

–Have people use better tags. I did not find the Dr. Altman Generating Electricity video under science experiment or science. I had to know it was Physics or Electricity. Taggers should always include the subject area, grade level, the topic, and the specific aspect of the topic. Electricity could be several other topics such as hydropower, coal burning, and nuclear reactors. Numerous taggers only use their name as the tag.

— List the time on the video in minutes. For Dr. Altman Generating Electricity the run time is in seconds such as 228 but when the video plays the time in minutes in 3:46. I think most teachers would like the time in videos.

— Some videos are very long -like 28 minutes. Student can pay attention to shorter videos of 3-5 minutes but longer ones may bore students and others. Dedicate one video to one concept.

– Limit the site to just teacher and student made videos, do not allow commercial companies in.

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

YouTube Educational Videos or Just Comic Videos

Unfortunately, at present there are not many worthwhile classroom videos that teach or share ideas about specific learning. Most are “commercial ” ones or ones ripped from TV shows. There are many student produced “This is an experiment we did” videos (So what science principle does it show? Why does what happens happen?). Many are put up for the comic value or ego value instead of their educational value. The K12 Educators area of YouTube has minimal teacher or student made instructional videos.

I would guess that about 20% of the YouTube videos are teacher or students made and of those about 5% are instructional. This translates as about 1% of YouTube videos are teacher or student made and are instructional.

If we work together we can change that percentage. Let’s try for 10% by Nov. 2007. Please help to put up teacher and student made instructional YouTube videos.

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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YouTube Classroom Use When Blocked By School Filter

Video Downloader

At home you have found some great YouTube videos produced by other classes that directly address your chosen standard. At school the next day, you go to open the YouTube video and you find that YouTube is blocked by your school’s filtering system. You were not planning on showing the videos for a few days but you are still upset. You complain to another teacher. James tells you how to overcome the block.

The steps are simple:

Find the YouTube video that you want.

Copy the YouTube url

Paste the url into a conversion site such as TechCrunch. This is will convert it to flv format. Remember where you save it.

You may want to rename the file with a name to describe the actual video instead of the random letters that YouTube assigns it. I would not know what the file name v=tP34F8XSXe4 means but I would understand USCivilWar

(You can add a YouTube downloader as an extension to Firefox.)

Download a flv player from a sites such as Applian.

Install the player, open it, and open your chosen YouTube video. Enjoy.

Once you have a way to convert the YouTube movies to flv and to play them with a Flv player, you can show your students standard-based YouTube videos.

If you know of any non-commerical other easy ways of converting YouTube to flv, let me know.

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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YouTube Stuff- Tagging it so Others Can Find it

When you post your YouTube video, please make sure to tag it with the major tag of Education; the subject area (Social Studies); the critical aspect of the standard (contributions of various groups); the specifics (Irish building the Erie Canal); and the general grade levels (4-11). Add any other tags that would help educators and students to find it such as Canal Songs, and Westward expansion, and New York State.

The better you tag it, the better other teachers and students can benefit from your efforts and your students’ learning.

We can make YouTube (and other YouTube like places) an educational repository of all our educational videos that are made by teachers and students for teachers and students.

So what tags have you used with your YouTube instructional videos?

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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YouTube Video Creation From Camera Still Pictures

camera

You and your students can create a YouTube video from still pictures from a camera.

You or your students take still pictures to demonstrate the standards-based learning. For example, a Spanish teacher may take a picture of a spoon with “la cuchara” written in dark big letters underneath it (a word processed slip of paper); another of a knife with the label of “el cuchillo”, etc. A student group may take pictures of a map showing how the Roman Empire grew. Science students may explain a science concept step by step. Then you move these pictures over to Mac’s imovies or PC’s Movie Maker, add narration for each image (for the Spanish example, the teacher pronounces the word several times), add a descriptive title, give credit to your class and then save it in the appropriate format.

You might find the following tutorial helpful if you are moving items (creating a story/scene using Stop-Motion Animation movie )

If students have created a meaningful and powerful standards-based PowerPoint, take a screen shot of each frame (on Mac use the screenshot program and on the PC use the free MWSNAP), and move these shots into your movie making program, add the narration, title and credits, and save it in the appropriate format. If you know of a non-commercial program that does this conversion in an easier fashion, please leave a comment.

Please share your successes or failures in creating YouTube educational videos from camera stills.

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

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