Friday, 30 March 2018

Week 4

Reflection 2: Videos in the Classroom

Lights 💡, camera 📷, classroom 🙋! 
Get your popcorn ready because today I am going to explore how videos can be an effective tool in the classroom. If a picture can say a thousand words just imagine moving pictures and audio!!

What Can Videos Do?

Videos open up an array of learning opportunities for students as it is really the ONLY media that can support students with all learning styles including visual, auditory, reading/writing and kinesthetic if implemented correctly. To illustrate what I mean by this take a look at this video created using stop-motion to derive a formula for the area of a circle.
 I am definitely going to implement this technique to teach math concepts to students. You will notice that the student can learn through visual by drawing the circle and looking at the coloured shapes forming a circle then a parallelogram. Writing and reading students will learn by writing down the formulas and keywords such as "radius" or "diameter". Cutting out slices of paper to form a circle and physically measuring it. Then using a string to measure the circumference assists kinesthetic learners. This video could have been further enhanced auditory learners by adding audio (Adding audio to video is tricky). I am sure the auditory learners would have greatly benefited from the process of creating this movie by talking and listening while creating and working out the problem.

Being a business/science teacher I am sure to be teaching math to year 7 to 10 students and look forward to using this method to create critical thinking and problem-solving skills that will inevitably develop a rich understanding of core concepts.

Is Video Easy to Use?

No, no it's not! From all the media types video is the most complex. However, you certainly can produce a really great movie with some effort and assistance from great apps. Be mindful that you would have to teach students the steps to create a movie using a particular app before implementing this as a class activity and which app you use is dependent on what hardware the student is using (iPad, Mac or Windows computer?). When creating movies you need to consider what is being used to create the movie? What type of files are you adding to the movie? The size of files for images or video files added to the movie - this is a big one as you don't want to upload a 6GB file this would cause chaos with the ability to upload and viewer to view (download or stream) as well.

Video Technical Considerations:

  • If you are presenting a video to your class I would highly recommend doing a test for sound and video before the class to make sure your device (computer, iPad etc) connects and sound and video works. Connections to the smart board or projector are usually HDMI or VGA if you have an iPad you will need a lightning to VGA or lightning to HDMI adapter (digital AV adapter).
  • If you are implementing a project that involves creating a video for the class make sure you include the time to teach students how to create the video although there would likely be kids with their own youtube channel already - These kids are useful for peer support - use them!
  • Be aware that creating a video involves using multiple apps such as video editing, image editing, and sound or recording software.
  • Equipment for video editing is also important. The easiest is an iPad an iPad can record and play video, edit images and edit videos. If you are using a Windows laptop then you may need additional equipment such as a video camera or if a microphone is not included you may require audio equipment.

Which Movie apps?

I have used a number of movie editors and my favourite would have to be iMovie. This is an app available for iPads and iPhones through IOS or the Apple operating system which is FREE. Considering a large proportion of students are using iPads in secondary school this is a particularly useful platform as it is free, user-friendly and completely customisable and is extremely useful whether you are a novice or a professional. You can create truly stunning videos. Another great movie editor I have stumbled upon is Light Works. This app is designed for Windows computers and is also free. But admittingly not as nice as iMovie a little more clunky and harder to navigate but can still produce similarly great movies.

Creating a Video for Teaching

To create this video I used my iPhone to record the video. Then I used powerpoint to create visuals to illustrate the implementation of video through the SAMR model and exported it as an mp4 file.

I used gimp to edit the student sitting in the chair.  by using paths to cut away the chair in the background then exported the image as a png to remove back ground.

I inserted audio (modern included in iMovie app) and split the audio at the start and reduced this to 0% until I stopped talking. I also increased the volume from my recording by 200% as I didn't use any microphones to record at the time.

image source:
Powerpoint theme source:
Audio: Modern theme song from iMovie

Implementing Video in a Business class using SAMR

Below is a mind map that I created using powerpoint and Thinglink. This illustrates how I use video to teach how to create business plans for business students.

Image Sources: Substitution image: Augmentation image Modification image: Redefinition image:


When showing videos such as youtube (including advertising) make sure the content is age appropriate and not offensive.

When creating videos identity and privacy is the biggest risk factor. Don't publicly upload any videos unless you have permission and make sure there is no danger of a student's identity being compromised. The use of log-in or submitting through a blog that needs to be logged in to access is a good workaround. Where possible do not say or write names.


  1. Hi, Heidi thanks for such an informative blog post. Your expertise with video gave me a great insight into its potential use in the classroom. I agree it would be fantastic as an end project for student-led development into a digital marketing plan and it would really enhance student job readiness. I have seen many online examples of students using it in the English/Social Studies classroom to perform texts or historical re-enactments. I think your stop motion method would also be very useful when talking about major world events because you could incorporate maps, human displacement, still images etc. Thanks again for introducing me to this idea for enhancing learning.

    1. Hello Laura,
      I'm glad you enjoyed reading my post and cool idea using stop motion for talking about major world events love that! I am excited to use stop motion in science class imagine watching a science experiment transform in stop motion! Really a very versatile medium to use in any subject.

  2. Hi Heidi,
    Awesome work on the blog post. It was engaging and informative. I haven't really had much to do with stop motion videos before but your blog has broadened my perspective to their applications. It would be a great tool to show a procedure in a short amount of time (E.g building a chair, clamping a job or making a cake, You also make a good point in the technical considerations about requiring additional equipment for some windows laptops. It can get difficult when you organise a lesson for students to record and half the class can't participate because of their computers. Great work again and you have definitely given me some ideas to try in the classroom. Cheers.