This afternoon I was informed that my school is closing for two weeks. This has left a lot of people wondering how to quickly put together some online lessons. I plan to use a lot of video over the next couple of weeks. If you’d like to do the same, here are three quick methods for creating video lessons.
Make Video Lessons Without Recording Your Own Video
EDpuzzle is a great tool for creating video lessons without having to record videos of your own. On EDpuzzle you can build questions and comments into any video that you find on YouTube. One of the great features of EDpuzzle is that you can track how long your students watch the lesson. You can even prevent students from skipping ahead to just guess at questions and submit their answers as fast as possible. Watch my new tutorial video to learn how to use EDpuzzle.
Create Videos With Your Existing Slides
If you already have a set of slides that you were planning to use in your classroom or you’re good at quickly building a slideshow, there are lots of tools you can use to quickly create a video based on those slides. Google Slides users can use tools like Screencastify (my choice for Chromebook users) and Screencast-o-matic (the tool I use on Windows and Mac) to quickly record themselves talking over their slides. PowerPoint users can take advantage of the built-in screen recorder in the Windows 10 desktop version of PowerPoint to make a video. Whichever screencasting tool you pick, remember to keep your webcam on and look at the camera because students will benefit from seeing your face.
Go Live and Use a Whiteboard or Screen Share
If you want to attempt to simulate a live instructional setting, you could do a live broadcast to your students via Google Hangouts Meet, Zoom, YouTube Live, or Microsoft Teams. If you’re like me and you’re told you have to go to school while your students stay home, just set up your laptop or phone in front of your whiteboard and start broadcasting. If you’re lucky enough to stay home, use the screen sharing functions to broadcast your computer to your students. A simple free-hand drawing tool like Google Jamboard (the online version is free) will let you draw and diagram as needed while you’re broadcasting your screen. Here’s a video on how to use Google Hangouts Meet, here’s one on how to use Zoom, and here’s one on how to use YouTube live.
Tomorrow evening at 8pm ET I’m going to host a free webinar in which I’ll share what I’m doing to quickly transition myself and my students to online instruction. Join me. I will record it and post in on my YouTube channel for those who can’t attend.