Sunday, April 17, 2011

Video Station: How to Clone Yourself

Perspective and Mood from on Vimeo.

Thanks to Salman Kahn for the excellent inspiration he shared with the world via TED Talks. Of course it makes sense to video record lessons. I was enamored with the idea that students watch lessons at home to provide for workshop time in class with teachers.

The Classroom 

The writing block's split into two sessions.  Groups are meeting with me two of the days to plan out some non-fiction writing.  On the first, they meet with me to go over the goals, then they have a follow-up group planning session.   The next day, they're group goal is an extension of the previous day's work and in the second block, I'm able to follow up, check in, extend, or answer questions.

While I'm meeting with those groups, I'm simultaneously teaching an extension lesson to 5 students on the back computers.  In the second block, those students post the activity to our writing wiki.  Another group worked on a reflection discussing the importance of a writer's notebook, to be video taped in the following block.  The final group watched a TED Talk, audio recorded a discussion about it before writing a reflection in their daybook.

The Other Shoe

The kids loved it.  They seemed to enjoy the different stations, were able to work independently, enabling me to focus on the small groups.  Their products were high quality and the kids stayed focused for the majority of the week.

About mid-week, as everybody worked away, over the loud speaker in the school, "If anybody is streaming video in the building, could you please turn them off, it's interfering with Galileo Testing." (Galileo tests are standardized tests to predict how our students will perform on the standardized tests).

One of the girls looked at me and asked if we should go apologize.  My response, "We will happily honor their request but do you feel we have anything to apologize for?"

When I went to check on the group filming their Writer's Notebook tour, the camera was put away in its case but they were still sharing... They thought the call about streaming video applied to their recording as well.

We've got some work to do here.  I just hope there are other classrooms that can use it!