Tuesday, August 11, 2009

YouTube & TeacherTube

How NOT to use powerpoint - a backwards way of giving learners some pointers...

captured from http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=6102&title=How_NOT_To_Use_PowerPoint

This clip is off TeacherTube.com, and from what I have seen out in classrooms so far, it is probably not a bad clip to show to your students before letting them loose on PowerPoint, especially if they are going to use it as part of an Oral presentation! If there is one thing I have learnt so far, it is to never EVER assume that the learners know or can do something, no matter how simple a thing you think it is. My prac class has to do an oral accompanied by a Powerpoint at the end of the term, so before they go to the computer labs instead of giving them a list of rules, it may be beneficial to show this clip, then brainstorm a list of things to remember when making their own. In this way the purpose of the clip is twofold - not only does it give learners some direct pointers or instruction, but it is also serving as an engagement tool and 'jumping off point' for discussion (which can lead to creating expectations for their own work...)

Just like any other tool, YouTube and TeacherTube should be used as just that - a tool. The pedagogy that used alongside it is what makes it an engaging learning opportunity. We need to be careful that we don't turn these video sources into a modern form of 'chalk and talk'. We must strive to promote active learning is all about having the learners "fully engaged in learning through interaction with others and worthwhile tasks" (Kearsley & Shneiderman, 1999, p.1).

Viewing these tools from an ICT Learning Design perspective, if the Learning Manager has created an appropriately ill-structured and broad task, clips from YouTube or TeacherTube can be used as either Learning Resources or/and Learning Supports (Oliver, 1999). Various clips selected by the Learning Manager may be downloaded and viewed/used by learners as part of their research, rather than doing all their information gathering from books or teacher directed learning experiences.

In the way of Learning Supports, the clip below is an example of how YouTube or TeacherTube can be used to scaffold learning around the use of ICTs in particular. They come in handy as a introduction or 'how to' for students unfamiliar with technologies they may be required to use for the task. If you use 'keepvid' and add it to the school website or a blackboard, learners can access these tutorials anytime, anywhere. As they get older they can even begin to search for them themselves (here I would recommend Teacher Tube over You Tube).

One more point for this posting... with TeacherTube you can also fit it into the Relate-Create-Donate cycle (Kearsley & Shneiderman, 1999). The task for learners may be to in groups make a video tutorial/video lesson/how-to/textbook etc. on even a part of a concept they are learning about then upload it to Teacher Tube (with LM guidence) for their peers and other students around the world to access and learn from!

Captured from http://teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=2634&title=Powerpoint_Tutorial

Keirsley, G. & Shneiderman, B (1999) Engagment Theory: A framework for technology-based teaching and learning. Available from http://home.sprynet.com/~gkearsley/engage.htm
Oliver, R. (1999). Exploring strategies for online teaching and learning. Distance Education, 20(2), 240-254.


  1. Hi Bethanie,
    I appreciate your thoughts regarding YouTube and TeacherTube. I agree that they should be viewed as simply a tool, and "the pedagogy that is used alongside it is what makes it an engaging learning opportunity" (Buma, 09). I think these technologies have the potential to become 'time fillers' or simply surface level entertainment. I do think they can be used to 'hook' students, but it is our job to truly engage them in rich tasks that are meaningful and worthwhile.

  2. Hi Andrew,
    All this new technology is great, but I also get concerned about them being used incorrectly - that is, as you say, for time fillers rather than for engaged learning.
    We must always be careful that, yes we are engaging students with these technologies, we are also not using them as modern day 'busy work'.