Top 3 Questions About Using Videos/Visuals in the Classroom


Did you know that a human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than words?


I was truly amazed this past school year when my students paid quite a bit more attention to a video of me than to me in person!

So, I set out on a quest to find out more about using video lessons in the classroom by finding the answers to these questions!

1.  Why do the students listen to me on video much better than to me in person?

This is the first question that raced through my mind when videos really got my students' attention.

So then I began to try to ask the students.  And of course, they all talked about how much they love YouTube (even though my video was not on YouTube).  

When I stopped to think about it, what they were really saying to me is that it is relevant to them.  

Plus, I did some research and found that in many studies, videos engage students because they create an experience and bring things to life  by telling a story.  And everyone loves a good story.  Why?  It's all in the emotions.


Source


2.  Does video truly benefit students educationally?

Consider these facts:


  • "One study found that after three days, a user retained only 10-20 percent of written or spoken information but almost 65 percent of visual information." (source)



  • Video naturally attracts audio and visual learners by itself - that's 2/3 of all your learners.  Add in a kinesthetic piece and you've reached them all!


It seems to me that when I put this all together, video does the hard work of getting my students' attention and then goes one step further to increase their memory.


Source

So naturally, if you're like me, you want to know....

3.  Can I "up" my video skills and get better results? (Does the type of production matter?)

The short answer to this is "no".  I naively thought that the more bells and whistles, the better!  So I dug into various video resources that I shared about last time like NearPod, EdPuzzle and Powtoon and started making other videos for my students.

However, after talking to the students, I found that they preferred videos with people in them over the ones with fancy moving clipart or things like whiteboard drawings.

This was further reinforced through my research in the Columbia University study when a participant said:


Source
Another participant went on to say
"I don't think it's the production value as much as it's the content and the professor getting the point across."


So now that we know that video has our students' attention, contributes to better comprehension and that it needs that human element, there's really a 4th question begging to be answered:

4.  Where can I go to get good quality videos?


This is the toughest question of all because while YouTube has a wealth of informational videos, all that glitters is not gold.

I can't tell you how many times I've looked for a good clip only to have to figure out how to remove parts due to inaccuracies or inappropriate things in the background.  

Not to mention all the time it takes to search, watch and/or modify! 


So, I have decided to make my own.  I am focusing on producing them without any of the fancy online programs since they don't get better engagement or results. Instead, I am just using my iPhone and a few other gadgets and gizmos.

 Next time, I'll tell you about how I make them (including the gadgets and gizmos)!

Until then, get a Free Copy of the Brain Facts for Video/Visuals (complete with their sources) most of which were presented in this post (plus a few extras!):


Thanks for stopping by!


How I *Finally* Got My Students' Attention!


My students listen to me better on video than in person!

It's summer, which means I'm allowing my mind to wander and ponder ideas for next school year.

This past year, I was constantly trying new tactics to increase student engagement.  Like you, I want to make sure my students "get it" and then can remember "it" for classroom and state tests.  

And then an amazing thing happened.  I created something fairly mundane (or so I thought) to show students how to take textual information and put it into an essay plan - on video.

I shared this video with the other four 6th grade Language Arts Teachers at my school and they showed it to all their students.

It wasn't long before students from other classes began to compliment me on the video and asked me if they could re-watch it!  So of course, I obliged, and it was posted on our school site.  Now even absent students could watch it!

(They were engaging with the video of me (not someone "cool") outside of class?!  What?!?!)

Soon students were asking me if I had a YouTube Channel because they follow lots of "YouTubers" and would happily comment on my video and tell about their favorite parts!  

(Their favorite parts?  You mean they actually remembered what I said?!)


This shouldn't have exactly surprised me as YouTube is the #1 search engine for those under 30 and the old saying is that a picture is worth 1000 words...but still!  The power of the video had me in awe because it seemed like I finally got their attention!

So then I really began to think - what is it about this video thing?  Why do my students listen to me better on video than in person?   How does it benefit the students educationally?   Could I "up" my video skills and get even better results?  After all,  that first video seemed pretty boring to me so what would happen if I could make them even better?

Some people suggested I use EdPuzzle or PowToon and many others to get the desired effect.  So I began looking into these and trying them out with the students.   

I like what some of them can do - like the whiteboard effect in Powtoon and making a YouTube video interactive in Edpuzzle. 

Since I am all about simplifying ideas in a practical sense, I even compiled what I found and learned about these tools into a kind of Video Resource Guide and you can get a Free Copy below!




But, as I am sure you suspected, making videos using these tools isn't quite what I expected.  And I'm not sure they really worked as well as my "boring" video.  Why is that?  

Next time, I'll share my research with this question and the ones above.  And let me tell you, all that glitters on the internet for video is not gold!

Be sure to visit Stephanie at Forever in 5th Grade to see some more great Show and Tell!


Thanks for stopping by!