The following three steps are suggestions on how to use a video in the classroom. All three steps are equally important and complementary to one another. They assess the effect of the use of the video and learning outcomes. Keep in mind that watching a video in the classroom is not the same as going to the movies.
Prepare an activity that targets the segment that children/students are going to see. Ask them only about one piece of information at a time. Children will pay better attention in this way. Focus your presentation on three key points that show the importance of what is going to be presented and the activities that are going to be performed. Make sure all your resources and activities are ready.
Tell your students that they are going to watch a video. Tell them what it is about and ask them for ideas and hypotheses on what they think they are going to see. You can write this information either on the blackboard or on the sheets provided with this guide. Discovery en la Escuela recommends the KWL chart, which can be given to students as a hand-out. This chart has three columns that will be helpful during this process. Here is how to use it.
KWL stands for:
What I know. What I want to know. What I learned.
This handout is a graphical organizer designed to help the learning process for students. Filling out the columns:
On the first column, labeled column “What I know”, children write what they know about the topic you have mentioned. There are many other suggestions that will be gradually included in this guide or that can be sent by e-mail upon request.
Ask children to perform a task based on the content of the segment they are about to see. Ask for three to five specific details, one from the beginning, two or three from the middle part and one or two from the end. They should write this information in the second column of their worksheet. Two objectives are achieved: first, children pay attention to the segment, and second, they have to be alert to find the answers.
Remember, do not turn the lights off!
Ask your students to compare the two columns and to write something new they have learned on the third column. They may then exchange their sheets with their classmates. Ask them to write another important fact on their classmate´s sheet. Repeat this two or three times and then have the sheets returned to the original “owners”.
Without knowing, children will have provided information that others might not have noticed. Thus, the learning process will be fun and engaging. Children will undoubtedly have learned something new and will have enjoyed an educational video that you made fun for them.
Presenting the video and performing an activity or two, may take 10 to 15 minutes of class time. Surely, you will not present another segment until you see it fit, perhaps when covering a new lesson or topic, perhaps, a few days later. You can be sure of one thing children will never forget how easy and fun the class was.