Saturday, September 6, 2014

Online Video Creation Sites for Elementary Students

Video creation should be a part of every elementary classroom - programs and website suggestions for the elementary and middle school classroom.  Suggestions from Raki's Rad Resources. Two years ago, I was lucky enough to attend a technology conference in London where Marc Prensky was speaking.  I remember a lot of what he said, but the one thing that stuck with me was, “If your kids aren’t making videos every day, they should be.”  At this point, my kids hadn’t made any videos – except playing around with Educreations a little.  So, I headed back to my school on a mission to see how I could fit video making into what we were already doing, because we all know there’s no time for extras in a busy Elementary School classroom!
So, where did I find the time?
Video planning for tutorial videos from Raki's Rad Resources 1.)  Math tutorials – the kids had been creating little lessons to present to our friends about the concepts we were covering in class.  (You know the saying about remembering 95% of what you teach – it’s true.)  Now, instead of presenting the lessons to a group or to the class, the kids recorded them and we shared them with our classmates through Edmodo as part of our flipped classroom model.  We used this great planning sheet to help the kids think about what exactly they would need to share.  Here are a few my kids created:

2.)  Project presentations – I’ve always been big about letting kids create projects to show their learning in different Science and Social Studies units.  Videos gave kids a whole new way to present, and really helped out the kids who got stage fright!  Here are a few my kids created:

3.)  Novel skits – At the end of a novel study, it is common for me to have students act out a chapter of the book as a new and interesting way to show comprehension of the book.  These novel skits turned into movie trailers with the use of iMovie’s great movie trailer templates.  Unfortunately, I can’t share any examples here, as they all show student faces, but the kids loved acting out their favorite characters! However, here is a summary of 3 Billy Goats Gruff done by another class:

4.)  Publishing writing – I’ve always given my students a variety of ways to publish their completed writing – blog posts, Google Docs, pretty cursive handwriting, etc.  However, videos gave them an extra option.  They could create a video of the actual story happening, or create a simple recording of their words and illustrations.  Here are a few my kids created:

Making videos is not that difficult, and can be done in SO many different ways.  We were lucky enough to have iPads.  If you’re lucky enough to have iPads in your classroom – check out my blog posts: Video Making Apps and 10 Ways to Use Your iPad’s Camera for information on how to use your iPad to make videos.  We were also lucky enough to have iMacs with iMovie.  iMovie is hands down one of the best softwares I have ever worked with to make videos, and it’s super user friendly.  If you have iMovie – use it, it’s wonderful.  However, it’s not wonderful enough for me to justify purchasing a Mac for my homeschool use this year, especially when there are so many other movie making options out there.  Here are a few other options for those of us not lucky enough to have iPads and iMovie.  :)
 1.) Powtoon – I have blogged multiple times about how much I LOVE Powtoon, the software is so user friendly and the kids love being able to animate the characters and edit so simply.
2.) Screencast-omatic – This website allows you to video whatever is going on on your screen right now – whether it is a group of pictures drawn by the kids, a slide show they created etc. etc.  Here is a screen cast video I made about how I used Edmodo for homework.

 3.) Photo Story – This is an actual program that must be downloaded, but it is FREE.  It allows kids to upload pictures and then record their voice behind it, creating a slide show type of video.
4.) Cam Studio – Similar to Screencast-omatic, this website allows you to video whatever is going on your screen, so as long as you can take a picture and get it onto your computer, this can really give you a lot of leeway!
5.) Jing – Another great screencasting program, this one needs to be downloaded to your computer.

For more resources to integrate technology into your classroom, check out my Technology Integration Kit.  You can also check out these blog posts:

Top 10 Reading Websites
Top 10 Writing Websites
Top 10 Math Websites
Websites to Teach Typing Skills
Websites to Create Videos
Heidi Raki of Raki's Rad Resources