Imagine thinking, after a hard day’s teaching, that what you thought had sunk in only to discover the following day that your students are twice as confused on the topic as you left them.
Unpleasant, right? Well, this is where classroom videos come in.
Classroom videos can be literal lifesavers for teachers if only they knew how to use it to their advantage.
Classroom videos can be a great resource for teachers’ professional growth, and can help teachers reflect on and learn from captured moments in the classroom while giving them a new perspective on their teaching.
Now that you know the importance of classroom videos, here are steps to starting one.
Put up a team
As teachers differ, so also do their individual perspectives.
Creating a video is an avenue to collaborate with other teachers and see things in different ways based on their unique views on how the video should come out.
Getting a team of teachers in your video project will introduce various strategies and approaches for you to better ask questions, respond to students, and facilitate discussion.
Setting specific goals will help you choose the right video clips and be intentional in your discussions of the video clips with others.
Think up specific areas in your teaching practice that you would like to improve – it could be encouraging students build off of one other’s ideas in discussions, helping students collaborate, getting more voices to participate, etc.
Once your goal has been established, you can think up new things to try out in your next lesson that may lead you towards achieving your goal.
Keep your videos short and simple as this will result in rich and thoughtful discussions and analysis. Recording long videos can be counterproductive (what kid wants to watch educational videos for…let’s say, one hour? no one!)
You could try recording five minutes segments of your teaching with a smartphone, laptop, or any software for videoconferencing.
Focus on challenges
The purpose of the video isn’t solely to show your teaching prowess. Your videos must capture moments in your teaching when you have a legitimate question about your practice.
Teachers understand that teaching can be quite complicated. That is why educational videos must help viewers make sense of the complexity.
What issue do you hope to address with the video? Will students find the video helpful? Are you passing the right message? These are some of the questions you should have in mind before making videos.
No instructional decision is good or bad. It all depends on perspective.
Instead of focusing on branding decisions, you should try taking advantage of the avenue that the topic in view opens up for teaching and learning.
You should try as much as possible to discuss and analyze the various possibilities rather than dwelling on judging outcomes, and consider implications for your future teaching practice.
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