Friday, October 29, 2010

Youtube goes interactive and educational

One can find almost everything on Youtube nowadays. From how-to-solve-the-magic-cube videos to those which inspire and help us teachers develop in our adventure of teaching.
Firstly, I'd like to talk about interaction, one of the pilars of Web 2.0. Interaction among users is key to a sucessful social media. Blogging, Twittering, Commenting on Facebook feeds all require interaction and that's what drives them to conquer the world we live in. For the very first time you can interact not only by commenting on Youtube videos, but also change the course of the video itself --- AMAZING!

How to use it in class:
When the video leads you to a copy of a youtube page - when in reality is a Flash miracle - ask your students what class of word they can use in the blank (answer = verbs) - Students can come up with as many verbs as they want and see the characters of this great ad acting as they commanded!
This way you can review verbs, commands, verb agreement, pronoun use and the works!

Secondly, I would like to call the attention of educators around the globe to the magnificent strand of Youtube: Youtube Educational Videos.
Inspired by Shelly Terrell's (@ShellTerrell) last post on her blog when she invited Kimberly Bowen to write about Youtube Educational Videos, I decided to give it a try.
At first I used to listen and see TED TALKS as my main imagery inspirational tool. However, I was greatly surprised by some of the EdVideos on Youtube.

Since youtube is quite more popular among students than TED Talks (which is especifically designed to educators)- this tool may help your students foster their learning onwership.

Why Using YouTube Educational Videos:
- Learning takes place not only inside the walls of a classroom. So, it's a nice idea to get students to discover their own learning pace. On Youtube they can watch videos whenever and wherever there's an internet connection. They may watch it how many times they wish as it is not a real-time presentation.
- Students can have the opportunity to access the presenter by commenting on the videos or sending him/her an e-mail. This way, they're not only learning but also building their own PLN.

Have you tried? I'd love to hear from you what your fave ones are!
Here's one of mine:

See you in a post! :-)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Education is at WAR. So why do you teach?

Having attended some of the Virtual Round Table conferences I had this insight:

I'd like to start saying that at first I did not pursued this career. My first thought was to become a personal trainer due to my great affection for sports at that time.
My family is basically compounded by teachers. I have my mother, two aunts, an uncle, a cousin and a few other more distant relatives who are educators. For this reason, I'd often said to my parents that this would not be the kind of profession I would follow. Why? Why getting so little for working so hard? Why trying to educate children who were not educated at home? Why working so many extra-hours at home, preparing material and stuff? (I'd seen my mother dreading the time when she had to use the mimeograph to make copies of tests. The only thing I liked was the smell of alcohol.) Why spending my leisure time preparing and correting tests if I could be lying on the beach instead?
You know know why? Beacause I had a dream! I dreamed of becoming a better person through making people the best they could possibly be.
And I still have a dream. I dream of making my country the top of the countries. Without education this is unattainable.
Education is at war. Noone dares doubt it. Unprepared teachers are ubiquitiously scattered in schools. Meanwhile, unprepared parents are relying on these teachers to educate their children. How could this be possible? Complaining about these trivial problems is easy. Here in Brazil, education never came first. And we'll have to live many years to see it the growing as a priority.
However, there have been more serious problems to be dealt with: our kids have been living a nightmare in schools. Much has been demanded from them. Much has been asked. Much has been said. Nothing has been done.
They often compare themselves to superheroes. Who have to multitask by doing great at school, having some time to see their friends, practsing some sport and the like. Phew! i'd get tired just to imagine.
Education needs heroes. However, these heroes cannot be the students. They have to be us! We have the power to lessen their pain, to make learning more enjoyable. To change their lives!
What have you done to change education so far?
I guess you should start by changing yourself! Education Reform is closer than you might ever have imagined. Be careful. You might be the one who's been left behind!

See you in post :-)
please comment!


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