Tag Archives: video

Hores are Good, Blackboard (TM) is Bad: Keynote Highlights Video #1

From D.’O.H! (the Dept. of Obvious Hypotheses):

Credibility is earned: If students see that their teacher has met with non-schooly success in any of the skills s/he’s teaching in class, then students might take that teacher’s coaching and instruction a bit more seriously. ¹

That’s why I’m screencapturing ² highlights of my “epic farce” of a keynote speech at the Learning Technologies 2009 Conference on Australia’s Sunshine Coast in Queensland last year and posting them on Youtube: so I can show them to my students this year and every year I breathe.

I’ll share several more clips soon — it’s called “shameless marketing,” I think, and I’m all for it, because straight out, I’d love more invitations to speak at conferences — but I chose the six-minute clip below as my lead-off for a very special reason: it ends with belly-laughs from the audience that had people outside the auditorium peeking in to find out what the hell could be so funny in a freaking education speech. Regular readers will know I find laughter appropriate for all houses of worship and of learning — and the sooner all such stodgy institutions get that, the better their (increasingly slim) chances to survive into the next century.

More importantly, the sooner students learn that laughter is okay when they’re presenting, the sooner they ascend from boring to interesting, from droning automaton to spirited human being. And maybe, just maybe, that discovery leads them to learn that designing and giving a presentation can be one of life’s highest pleasures.

So make sure you stay until the end — pacing warts and all — so you can hear all about why Hores are so great:

Steal This: How to Teach Presentation Zen in Eight Minutes

I’m pounding skills — writing and presenting — right out of the starting gate this year, so both my History of China and my World History courses are working on learning how not to cause Death by Powerpoint, but instead cause Delight by Design, via examples from TED Talks and the principles underlying them (consciously or not) from Garr Reynolds’ Presentation Zen. (Reynolds’ Amazon page here, and his blog here.)

Notice I didn’t label those skills “writing and speaking.” As I tell my students, in their future, some type of visual will be expected virtually every time they speak. Whether Powerpoint or sci-fi Holograph, design skills will be as important as traditional delivery skills. So my two target skills, again, are Writing and Presenting.

To that end, this year I’m not only showing TED Talks, and my own first attempt to apply that presentation style, to my students. I’m also adding, for the first time, this excellent, excellent, excellent 8-minute Youtube overview of Reynolds’ book by marketing strategist Matt Helmke to teach the principles more schematically. Helmke’s video models the design style while teaching about it. I urge you to give it a look for use in your own classrooms. 8 minutes:

¹ Better still, if they see said success was the result of simply writing and podcasting on a personal blog, then they might perk up a bit when teacher evangelizes about the New Media and self-publishing. But that’s for later.
² Why the screencapture? Because the conference was filmed and published in the Microsoft Silverlight format, which makes viewing it require more clicks and downloads than desirable in my book, and walls it off from embedding across the web. One hopes the good folks at Learning Technologies will find a more Open solution to publishing their events in the future.

Video on The Benefits of Co-Teaching: A Blast from 2005

I don’t discuss my years as an English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL, a.k.a. ESL) specialist much on these pages, mainly because there are no ESOL students at my high school. But the experience of being a second teacher in the content-area classroom when I wore this hat? That’s some good fodder for thinking beyond school-as-usual.

Any of you who have co-taught or team-taught know the mix of factors that can make it a nightmare or a paradise. Working with fellow history teacher Michael Harvey (now in Abu Dhabi) was a dream. I discuss this in the movie below, and students weigh in on why they liked it too.

I still miss having a second adult in my English and history classes today. ESL aside, it just creates possibilities for better teaching – primarily by giving students the experience of hearing two “expert” adults argue about literary, social, political, and other issues. Michael and I debated such things as Castro’s Cuban revolution, American imperialism during and after the Cold War, the merits of economic, political, and religious systems, etc, with sincere differences. We fenced about them in free-wheeling debates whenever one of us disagreed with the other. We told the students to decide whose arguments had the most merit.

Then we had scotch and nice long talks as best of friends outside of class.

The students loved it. It was learning the family dinner-table way, with two reasonably intelligent, informed adults discussing and debating world events. “Kids” with ears learn a lot that way about thinking and points of view.

So this 2005 ESOL-in-the-Mainstream co-teaching training video I made at Shanghai American School is a good example of team teaching that worked. It’s received good feedback over the years. And notably, it’s about teaching, not about technology. Disclaimer: The dreaded Five-Paragraph Essay rears its ugly head here, but remember – it’s in the context of teaching academic essay-writing and organization for 14-year-olds. I always unteach the 5PE once students have shown they’re ready for organic writing.

It’s my first-ever iMovie, by the way. And enjoy the goofy Baptist preacher look I was playing with back then. I’ve since re-embraced my freak-flag. ;)

Note: I’ve added this to my Teaching Gallery page.

“That’s not Homework; That’s Writing”: Authentic Student Blogging (Presentation Snippet 2)

In a post last month I mentioned seeing the need for short video presentations about web 2.0 in education, and posted a snippet from a parent presentation I gave at our 1:1 Apple Laptop School launch. That snippet focused only on the motivational power of a simple ClustrMap on a blog.

Here’s another one: Less than three minutes, it’s about how blogging can transform a person who does not write into a person who writes daily – because of the connective nature of authentic, self-directed, passion-based (or, for the lukewarm, interest-based) blogging. I use myself as a case in point.

This clip makes me chuckle because I loved standing with my school administrators on stage, talking to parents of a neurotically grade-obsessed culture, and announcing quite non-chalantly: “I don’t like school. I like learning, but I don’t like school. I want to take students beyond school and into real learning.” I wonder how such a thing sounded to Confucian ears.

I conclude with a brief pontification on the fact that homework scribbling is not writing.

I’ll also post this on the “Teaching Gallery” page of this blog. (And stay tuned for more “Cut the Crap” movie-making tutorials here, and on the “Cut the Crap” page.)

Here it is. Criticism is welcome, since this is part of my own project-based learning about multimedia production.

“Cutting the Crap from Student iMovies”

Eight minutes on how to 1) find content on Creative Commons, 2) use Zamzar to download YouTube and other videos for mashups. (It’s also posted on my “Teaching Gallery” static page.) [Update: Photos credited in final titles, plus CC licensing added.]

Coming in Episode 2: Still Photo Skills: Advanced use of the Ken Burns Effect.