Wednesday, February 21, 2018

The Power of Non-Fiction Videos in the Classroom

Movie Projector

Movie Projector

For those of you who are over a certain age, the sound of a projector most likely brings back memories of school days when the shades were drawn and a collective groan was heard among your classmates who were dreading watching another educational film. Or you are a bit younger and remember the substitute teacher pulling out the VCR and popping in a video.

For all of the boring films and videos you sat through, there were those gems that may have changed your life and most certainly enhanced your awareness of the world around you. I remember excitedly watching that fabulous series Walter Cronkite narrated called The 21st Century in school. Although it also aired on television, watching it in the classroom on the “big screen” made a lasting impression on me.

Videos have long been known to be a powerful tool in the classroom because they enhance lessons and learning so well. Teachers can’t possibly know everything about a subject and always appreciate the help of a well made video to show to their students. Also humans learn in a myriad of ways. With video, you offer a more extended visual and auditory learning experience beyond a lone teacher in front of a blackboard. With how-to videos, you can actually show steps from many different angles. With the use of programs such as Camtasia or ScreenFlow 4, teachers can easily demonstrate complex computer programs to students.

In the last twenty years television has been embracing what teachers have long known as a potent tool. It comes as no surprise that educational programming and even dedicated educational channels have become popular in our homes. Some of these channels are staples in my household so, if you’ll excuse me, I am going to draw the shades now because my favorite Discovery Channel show is on.


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