Tools for Annotating Images and Videos

In history classes I often use pictures and videos to spark discussion. Dan Meyer made a name for himself developing math instruction that utilized images and videos as prompts. My friends who teach art use images of artworks to encourage questions about techniques.

For years questions sparked by pictures and video (or film) clips were limited to in-person discussion and writing on physical paper. Today, we have lots of digital options for students to use to ask questions and to respond to questions. And we can respond to them digitally as well. Doing so keeps a record that we can refer to and build upon as needed.

These are the tools that I recommend for annotating images and videos with your comments, your questions, your students’ questions, and your students’ comments.

Annotating Images

Seesaw is known as a digital portfolio tool, but there is much more to it than just collecting examples of your students’ work. One of the many features of Seesaw is an option to draw on images, type on image, and record audio notes about uploaded images. This is a great way for students to ask questions and share observations about an image that you share with them. In this video I provide a demonstration how students can annotate images in Seesaw.

Google’s Jamboard seems to be a tool of thousands of possible online and in-person classroom uses. Annotating images is one of the ways that I’ve been using it for the last couple of years. In my PC repair class last year I had students label images of the parts inside a desktop computer. And recently I made this video to demonstrate how to use Jamboard to annotate a historical image (the concepts apply to any picture).

Annotating Videos

Timelinely is a free service for adding annotations to YouTube videos. You can use Timelinely to add text, image, and video annotations to any public YouTube video. After you have added your annotations to a video you can share the annotated version with anyone much like you would share any other video. You can share your annotated video by embedding it into a blog post or by just giving people the link to the annotated version of the video. Here’s a demonstration of how it works.

Vialogues is a website that is designed to enable users to host conversations around a video. Users can upload videos to Vialogues or use YouTube videos as the centerpieces of their conversations. After you have selected a video from YouTube or uploaded a video of your own, you can post poll questions and add comments that are tied to points in the video. Your Vialogue can be made public or private. Public Vialogue’s can be embedded into your blog or website.

If you have videos stored in Google Drive, you can add comments to them and or have students add comments to those videos. It’s actually one of those simple things in Drive that is often overlooked. Just open a video stored in your Google Drive then click on the comment icon in the upper-right corner of the screen to add a comment. Watch this video to see how it’s done.

Self-paced PD Courses.