Tuesday, October 14, 2008

921--Session 6

One of the elements we'll be covering in this session will be videoblogging. This is the ability to post more than just text to your blog, but entire videos to help support your lessons. I've shown you a few examples on our class blog this semester.
One of the great things about this tool (there are many to choose from) is that every resource and skill I will be showing you can be done for free. You may read past participants' comments here, and this past Summer's here.

Here is example of a college using a vodcast (a video podcast), to help them solicit prospective students. They've posted this to YouTube so whenever a potential student does a search for Franklin College they'll receive this video as part of their results:

This session you will have the ability to go into as much depth as your curiosity allows. There is basic, elemental information available, as well as advanced information, instruction tutorials, and text directions for you to recreate and duplicate what these models show you. Similar to the distinction I made with Podcasts about the ability to simply use this tool, as opposed to creating videos yourself, please remember that I try to give you more information than you can digest with the hope that you will revisit these sessions in the future when the need (or desire) arises.

Good luck, have fun, and keep an eye on the clock.


Uploaded on authorSTREAM by davefontaine1


dgcap said...

Session 6 Comments
I loved this section on vodcasting because, as an elementary school teacher, I'm always looking for ways to motivate students and include parents in what we're doing in our classroom. Already, just a few of the ideas that are spinning around in my mind as to how I can use vodcasting are: Film student bookreport presentations and put them on our class blog, have students write scripts in writing class and then act them out (which would be filmed and posted so parents can watch their children's learning), have students report out their discoveries in Science (in the format of news reporters or scientists) so that parents can see what some of the experiments we did were.

I also liked the idea of screen-casting, because that will enable me to make a how-to video on my computer of different project ideas. One idea is making a powerpoint for a social studies project or even book report. I screen cast the demo, post it, and then parents will be able to watch it and feel like they can help their children at home.

On a side note, I had a very proud moment this weekend. I prompted (and bribed a little... I am in Fourth Grade...) my students to log onto our class website this weekend and make comments on our science post. I actually had a student post this weekend, which I followed up with a comment. But my thought was, "This is amazing! With this blog, I now have student learning on the weekend!" To me that is just incredible. I'm sure that once some students hear about it, I will have more independent blogging (so far we've only posted in school).

I look forward to seeing how else I can include technology in the classroom, both as a means to educate my students and to keep my parents involved.

dgcap said...

*side note*
I'm sorry, but I wasn't sure which section to post this in. But for those of you that are browsing our blogs... The blog I'm using in my classroom is pw secure, so I can't have you log in to check it out. But I recently added photos to the blogger account I set up. If you go to http://dgcap.blogspot.com/ you can see it. While you really browse the pages, you can get an idea of what I'm trying to do. In the upcoming weeks I'll be adding a pod/vod-cast section where I'll be uploading student read stories and videos of book presentations.

KAS Librarian said...

Last week I had a fourth grader create her own vodcast book review by herself. I had to go back and figure out that she just did it in iMovie. Apple is amazing. Today I had sixth graders recording review podcasts with Audacity (our library is half PC/half Mac). Originally they were going to be vodcasts but our internet has slowed down to the point that they won't reload, so we decided on just audio instead. One of the students asked if he could practice by reading it on iMovie.

While I have only used it for book reviews and that is in the last week, I can't wait to expand this technology to all sorts of things. I love the idea of the plays and the news reports. I am collaborating with one grade level with model United Nations and they could take video while they are aways and use it as a vodcast news report for those who stayed home.

Our library site is now live, although I am going to change it radically shortly by replacing some logos with words. It includes a blog, podcast page and vodcast page. Some of the links didn't work but it takes at least a day to refresh (or more) because our local internet provider isn't very prompt. However, here is the work in progress: kaslibrary.org. I made it with iMovie, so unfortunately the blog will not take comments.

Has anyone seen voice thread before? I received this link a few days ago http://www.speedofcreativity.org/2007/09/05/alexander-and-sarah-share-favorite-books/. I like how comments can be left on the thread.

jfayne said...

This session has me thinking about how technology has changed during my lifetime. When I was in high school, I used my father's manual typewriter for school papers. He used a manual one because he typed faster with a manual than an electric one. My son was in high school about ten years ago and he used a laptop. It took me a while to used to him typing a paper directly on the laptop with no rough draft. I learned by writing a rough draft, editing, then writing a finished copy, and finally, typing from that finished copy.

My daughter is in high school now and has a laptop, a video ipod, and a cell phone but feels she is technologically challenged because she does not have a texting plan. She was also mad because her sister, who is in middle school, received her cell phone when she got to middle school rather than high school as the older daughter did.

I can't even imagine what we will see in ten years. I love seeing people use videocasting to send a message. It reminds me of the movie, Wayne's World, where they had a cable show from their basement. Who knows? I may even put a podcast or videocast on my blog.

PDLibrarian said...

This section overwhelmed me a bit, I must confess- at least some of the tutorials seemed kind of involved, (even when the narrator assured us that it was easy..). There's no way around it, I'll have to try this. Loads of potential applications, as my colleagues in this class have pointed out- I love the idea of being able to include snippets of video on website and blogs;

Screencasting still confuses me just a but, but again, I suspect that it is easier to do it than it is to listen to someone explain how to do it..I am curious what Dave uses to imbed video into our class blog- is it "authorstream" instead of "screencast.com"? Are they essentially the same kind of thing? What is your preferred program or programs to use?
I am not quite ready to try this- I would need our video camera from school. Though, I do have a video made a couple of years ago from a previous Battle of the Books event, and it would be neat to post it right into the Battle of the Books blog- it would definitely help build enthusiasm for the event- I'll give it a try when I'm at school.

On a more general topic, it is amazing, as jfayne pointed out, how fast technology is advancing. I clearly remember when watching videos in quantity required too much bandwidth to be practical- it's standard now. In another ten years, I could easily imagine classes give in this way totally replacing "traditional learning", especially at higher levels much more commonly than it is done now. The presentations will probably be 3-D or holographic, and include virtual representations of class members! Instead of commenting by typing, our avatars would speak our comments!! This is getting to be fun. It is also interesting to me that we are still in such beginning stages of all this technology, that we are so self-concious about all these possibilities- I thingk the tools will be easier and easier and soon, not neccessary to teach anymore, because the technology will be so simple (particularly if we start bringing students into things as quiockly as possible).
It is amazing enough what we can do now- can't even imagine a decade from now!

J Wilson said...

Session 6 Comments
This week was an opportunity to examine vodcasting. Although I had made an immediate assumption that video podcasting would be better because it is visual, now I am not sure if it is actually better. I found that there are pros and cons to each format; that in fact they are two completely different media. I thought video podcasting would make audio podcasting obsolete, but each has its place. According to a comment by a blogger named Karin H√łgh, the main difference is that, “Audio is a background media. Video is a foreground media.” A listener can jog, drive, clean, exercise, etc. But if you are watching a video you have to give it more attention; it becomes your main activity. Videos can be more appealing and convey a more powerful message. It all comes down to your intent, time and budget.
Soon I will be videotaping a class sixth grade students giving their book reviews. They probably could be audio podcasts, but I know the parents would like to see and hear their children in school, so we have chosen vodcasts.
As I was reading blogs and following resource links, I stumbled upon a great website.


It deals with podcasting and using the program Audacity. The tutorials are good examples of screencasting too! Scroll down to see and hear each tutorial. We are using Audacity right now in school, so I was particularly interested in these tutorials which will really help turn our recordings into a podcast. I plan on using the screencasts with my students. If I can find the time, I would like to make screencasts of lessons for students and professional development as well as tech tips for staff.
I agree with jfayne and pdlibrarian. I was discussing with my class about how computers and technology have changed in their lifetime and how it has really changed in mine. So we can only imagine how small and fast things will be in the next ten years. How about clothes that are regulated by computers to sense the room temperature and adjust accordingly....a student came up with that one! I can't wait for voice activated computers so I don't have to type anymore.....wait, didn't we just get text messaging, so we don't have to talk anymore?

T Weinberg said...

Session #6 comments
This is a little off topic, but reading jfayne’s comment brought back memories of my college days, when I had to complete my final handwritten draft a day early to leave time for typing. Writing with a word processor is such a different experience then the pre-technology world I grew up in. It enables one to jump into writing without having a fully formed plan because it is so easy to edit later on. Unfortunately, I see so many of my students start working on a final product without doing enough research and advance planning. They get excited about using the technology, but don’t want to put effort into the content.

To get back to videoblogs, I liked several of the ideas that my classmates suggested. The college video on our blog made me realize how powerful it would be to create a video of life at our middle school to show to incoming students during their orientation, instead of a powerpoint. We also use a powerpoint each year to help students select their unified arts electives (computers, consumer sciences, tech ed, etc.)- it would be so much more enticing to show them a well-crafted video of each class in action instead, narrated with student comments about what they are working on.

Like dgcap, I am most excited about trying screencasting when I need to give students directions for a project. It seems like an excellent solution to the frustration caused by endlessly repeating directions because students were not paying attention the first time. It would also be tremendously useful for when I give PD to teachers- it is so easy to forget how to use technology if you don’t try it out immediately and repeatedly, so having access to the lesson in video form available when teachers are ready to use the technology would save time for them and for me.

pstevens said...

I found session 6 very practical and timely! I know that there are many teachers and students who would appreciate having a screencast of the image-based tutorials that I share with them. I knew about screencasts, but I never have created any, except as a practice situation in a training session. I had used the ActivStudio recorder tool that comes with the Promethean board to create one a year ago. One thing about new technology is that you have to use it several times before you can remember the nuances of the program. Since I already have that software, and found a flipcharts that describes how to encode (?) it as an MP3 file, I will try that software. Just a note to our fellow students: You do not need a video camera to do a screencast. The software you select (like Activstudio) records your computer screen and all of your mouse movements, as well as your voice. I, too, am learning how this new technology works; it’s pretty amazing (or magic) sometimes. Had I not created one, I would have thought that a video camera was being used to record the screen.
Being able to post a video into a wikispace or blog is very useful. Just today, an administrator asked me to develop some videoblogs or Promethean flipcharts for using web 2.0 tools to post to our school’s shared drive. It looks like I will just jump in right now.
Four things I learned when I created my screencast titled “How to Create a Wikispace”: 1. Know that you will make numerous takes to get a product you want to keep. (I made 8 versions before I was happy enough to share.); 2. Create a script or outline of everything you plan to include in the screencast; 3. Try out your plan first. I discovered some details about the wikispaces space name that I had forgotten as well as some other glitches; 4. Upload your video file to a host site.
Overall difficulty on a scale of 1-10: 6. Prepare, prepare, prepare. I used the Activstudio flipchart recorder tool to create the AVI file and tried to post it to my wikispace from home. My home Internet connection is much too slow to upload efficiently. I will have to do that from work.
I think I will have to convert it to a different file or upload it to a video hosting site, like Google videos before I can embed it. I’m learning every day.
In this week’s reading, Paul Knight shares that had he had video blogging in school when he was a student, he would have benefitted immensely. I consider my own creative students whom I have had over the years and how they might have benefitted by being able to share their ideas or opinions in such a public forum. How might this type of blogging changed them and their experiences in school?

Anonymous said...

Pam Hurt
Session 6 Comments

In this session I was glad to extend my basic understanding and familiarity with podcasts and videoblogs. As we continue in this course, I find so many opportunities to enhance and differentiate instruction, which certainly help to engage and motivate students.

Just a bit behind:(, last year was the first time I really began exploring and using YouTube as a viable tool for presenting and supplementing instruction. At home, as I searched for related vodcasts, the hours just drifted away – not because I couldn’t find the “right” video, but because I had so many great alternatives! In my classes, I also used this site for students to locate vodcasts on books they’d read, asking them to search for, evaluate, present, and discuss animations and dramatizations of works we’d read; because of the variety in videos chosen, students participated in animated discussions about a book’s interpretation in addition to focusing on various aspects of literary terminology and analysis.

Soon into school last year, however, I discovered I could no longer use this source (YouTube.com) in my classes as our tech staff had blocked access on our entire network. I persisted, however, and was able to gain access for a period – as our tech administrators permitted access at teachers’ requests – but such an option is not possible this year. While I understand the rationale for such limitations, I miss the flexibility and opportunity to use such useful visual prompts in my classes. As a replacement, I’ve visited TeacherTube and StudentTube, but have not had nearly the success I’d had at YouTube. With this course, I’ve been turning to googlevideo – and found more alternatives – and am now extending my searches to include the other video sources Dave has mentioned. Despite my frustrations, I am thrilled that we have so many free sources available!

One site I’ve used for podcasts is www.npr.org. There, I have found some great material related to books, authors, and other content in English. I incorporated one such podcast on a blog for my 9th graders last year. Looking at the CNN.com site this week, I’ve found some other meaningful alternatives. Also, downloading videos from United Streaming (http://streaming.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm) is another source both for in-class instruction and as a tool for bettering blogs. Just like Jpayne, as I surfed information this week, I found a website I think is helpful in locating and using podcasts; at this point, I know I’m grateful for alternatives to minimize my search time while maximizing my results: http://www.wonderhow to.com/how-to/video/how-to-find-and-use-podcasts-for-educational-use-170036/. On the other hand, I visited ourmedia.org and thought I’d find some valuable information among the 1,294 open education sources available. Unfortunately, while I noticed numerous math sites created by MIT and Peking University, among others, I found little content for the English curriculum. In fact, this source seemed to be most helpful for advanced science and math course content.

Like pdlibrarian, I too am not quite sure about the process of screencastng, though the concept certainly appeals as it certainly opens up find possibilities for teachers to connect with students and parents…right in their homes! Once this technique is mastered, screencasting offers the ongoing opportunity for classroom instruction and background to be available for students and parents 24-7. Teachers accomplished in using this tool would not only facilitate instruction (as such materials could be used as tutorials in the classroom), but also be responsive to students with long-term absences, trips, etc. Ebooks, too, would be helpful for meeting student needs, especially in a coaching / mentoring program or for accommodating students with reading or language disabilities.

I am sorry to admit that I’ve never used an Ipod, but I “commissioned” my student aide to give me some instruction soon. When I visited the Apple site, http://www.apple.com/au/ education/ipod/lessons, I reviewed the lesson plans available and printed out Apple’s plans for a Radio Show and Oral Histories. These lessons—which are very direct and detailed in presentation – with solid content, guidelines and technology suggestions – particularly grabbed my attention. While I would adapt the lessons to meet my curriculum, I know my students and I would be excited as they’d fulfill pair fulfilling English requirements while “playing” with some of their favorite “toys”. What could be better?!

By the way, I lifted the private posting restriction on my blog, http://fhschatson. blogspot.com/, so it is now visible for nonmembers. If you visit, please comment; you’ll notice that I definitely need to boost appearance and add some “special effects”…I promise I’m working on that!

Lots of info. this week…I need to let it settle in and then put it all to work!

Finally, TWeinberg, you gave me a “shot in the arm” when you mentioned how it’s easy to forget how to use a new technology unless you take the time to practice and use it frequently…I thought that was a problem just I encountered! I can get so frustrated when I sit down at my computer, confident that I can accomplish my goal in the hour or so I have…only to get hung-up on step two when I have six steps to get me to a completed project! While taking notes helps, it’s repetition that gives me ownership of a new technique. Thus, I hope…but wonder if I can capture the time to perfect my use of the tools I’m learning through courses online and my CFF Coach. Also, with the opportunities we’ve had thus far, I look ahead and wonder about the classroom of the future…thinking about the potential for literally being so in touch with the world community through conferencing, being able to create truly professional documents and videos, etc., etc., WOW! I wonder what future’s technology will offer “average” American students in the years to come? The possibilities seem infinite!