Thing #19-Tube Power

vintage movie camera

 Photo by lyrabellacqua

Exploring YouTube: 

I thorougly enjoyed exploring youtube and teachertube for “Thing #19”.  Of course, I know how addicted my own students are to youtube, and I can see why.  I am quite impressed by how youtube originated.  It’s amazing how a few young guys’ ideas turned into an empire of sorts.

YouTube in My Classroom 

I have a novel unit starting in May for Lois Lowry’s The Giver for 7th grade Language Arts.  I usually start the unit with a youtube retro video of John Lennon’s “Imagine“.  The students are so drawn to The Beatles and anything retro, and I always try to hook them on pop culture and visual tools to spark their interest.  This youtube video is always a hit. We use the video and lyrics to spark a discussion about “utopia” and I introduce the term “dystopia” at the same time.  This ignites a discussion in small groups about what they would do to make the world a “utopia” or perfect place. 

This year, I plan on expanding the use of youtube with a student-produced video representing the theme of the novel  The Giver.  Students can choose still images or live footage.  I think because of the shortage of time, they may opt for the still images, which we can compile from flickr and original shots.  We also may even use windows photo story for the creation of the movie.  The creation of the video is an alternative to my previous idea of creating slideshows using Rock You, Animoto, or another slideshow production tool available for free online.  I think I’ll give the options to the students.  Either way, they will be required to embed the videos or slideshows on our class wiki, WritePostRead

Students will be able to sample a few student videos for the novel The Giver by viewing clips on youtube and teachertube.  Here is a  trailer of the novel, created by some students:

Video by clarkviola 

Students will be able to use this sample to inspire their creativity.  In addition, we can use this sample clip as a springboard for critique, effects, and style. 

I did notice that teachertube offers less videos on topical searches, but each item I found was better prepared.  It is evident that many of the projects were teacher-coached and results of well-designed rubrics and scaffolded instruction.  This will be a timesaver for me in the future, as many of the trailers I found on youtube were lacking in quality.

YouTube for Fun:  I had a blast endulging in my love or the ’80s, surfing many video collections and sound bytes of the one-hit wonder bands of the ’80s and mixes of the ’80s’ sounds.  It made me smile and remember my own big hair days in high school:)  I also found a cool video on embroidery.  I found myself forced into the art of the needle for my daughter’s recent rite of passage at school.  I did find videos on different web sites when I needed it, but I think youtube would have been a much easier search for me.

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