The concept of the flipped classroom has taken off. In a nutshell, the traditional idea of teaching is turned on its head. Homework is now listening to the lecture or simulation via video (self made or found online) and the classroom becomes a place where the teacher (and other students) help in answering all of those student questions that used to keep students stumped while working on their own.
In pursuit of this model, many teachers are videoing themselves doing the direct instruction part of teaching. These may be used for review or as a way for students to familiarize themselves with the concepts prior to coming to class. Regardless of what the purpose is, there is some research out there about multimedia design that will help you prepare these videos. It doesn’t require you to be a film expert; it does require that you review what you provide for your students with a critical eye to get the maximum learning.
1. Editting is important. Our learning channels, both auditory and visual, can only hold so much information. Cut out extraneous information. If there is background noise, consider deleting the original audio and doing a voiceover. Make sure that you can be heard, especially if you are working at the board.
Take a look at your board or background area. It should be clear of all extraneous material- notes from other classes, reminders, etc. Frame your shots to focus on what you want your students to learn.
2. Make sure you have visuals and narration- but not too much. Think of the PowerPoints you have endured. If you are hearing words and seeing words, you are dangerously close to overkill. Use images and spoken words whenever possible. Don’t layer words on images (unless they are labels) and then provide audio as well. If the narration can follow the visual by a couple of seconds, even better.
3. Break your videos into segments. If you are explaining a complex or lengthy concept, break it into chunks and use some sort of transition to visually create a segment. This will help the viewer make connections and not get lost.
4. Allow user control of the video. YouTube has a feature called Deep Linking. In essence, it allows you to link to a specific time in your video. Using deep links can help you create a menu to different parts of your video. There are two ways to do this:
You can create these links in the comments section of the video. Just type the name of the section and the time it appears (as shown below) in the comment box under your video and you will provide your students a menu. A caution- you will want to limit others’ ability to post comments if you use this option. Otherwise your menu will move farther and farther down the page as comments are added. This can be done in the video settings once it’s posted to Youtube.
If you’d prefer to incorporate these links into a webpage or provide them via email, you can add the entire URL with the timestamp as shown below:
Finding Your Lists: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iymb0ra4Mfo#t=0m29s
Creating Custom Lists: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iymb0ra4Mfo#t=0m52s
Adding Friends to Your List: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iymb0ra4Mfo#t=1m14s
Directions for both methods are posted here.