So just last week, I asked my students to watch a video for homework. The video was reasonably short (9 min), packed with useful information and quite entertaining. Ok, maybe that last part is an exaggeration but the rest is true. Anyways, my point is that I told my students to watch the video so that we could jump right into the content the following day in class. Well, I think you know what happened next. The next day, I started class by asking them to complete a few simple problems based on the video and I quickly noticed no one knew what to do. At this point, I said “raise your hand if you watched the video last night.” I then did what any good teacher would do as I casually said “Oh, and by the way, I can look this up on my computer.” I’m a pretty good bluffer so I was not too surprised when only a few hands crept in the air. (To be totally honest, I’m not 100% sure if I can look this stuff up or not as I have never really tried. I figure that this way, I’m not really lying – it’s kind of like a loophole.)
So what can I do differently? How can I easily monitor whether or not my students have watched a video and better yet, whether or not they understood it? The answer is EDpuzzle. (A big thanks to Christina and Rebecca for showing this to me!) While this video tool allows for both video creation and editing, I like it for two different reasons. First, EDpuzzle has a no skipping feature. This means that while the students can rewind to replay content, they cannot fast forward to the end of the video. I love it! Second, EDpuzzle allows a teacher to insert questions throughout the video. When a question pops up, the video is automatically paused so that material is not missed. These questions can help students maintain their focus throughout the video as well as identify the key points that they need to come away with (and if they are objective type questions, they are graded automatically!). So what does this all mean? It means we can all easily hold our students responsible! Just search for and assign the desired video through EDpuzzle. Later, log on (through your school Gmail account) and quickly see which students watched the entire video and even how many questions each student got correct along the way. If you don’t want to invest the time it takes to add questions, just assign an unedited video through EDpuzzle and check back to see who watched it. Since both the student and teacher logins run through already existing Google accounts, signing up and logging in couldn’t be easier! After that, only your creativity can hold you back!
Just in case your mind has merely been ignited rather than blown, EDpuzzle also allows teachers to create their own videos or to edit a video to make it better. A pre-existing video can be cropped, audio notes can be added throughout, and the entire audio track can even be re-recorded.
- Videos are often too long and if the video was created by someone else, there is a good chance that it contains additional (and unnecessary) information. EDpuzzle provides an easy way to crop the beginning and the end of the video. Simply slide the cropping tool to your intended starting and stopping points. Now your video only contains the necessary information.
- The video chosen might not highlight or focus on a point you think is important. EDpuzzle allows the teacher to add audio comments, remarks, conclusions, etc at any point throughout the video. This is a great way to stress key points for those students who have trouble following and organizing the main ideas.
- Videos produced by other people often word things different. EDpuzzle allows the teacher to easily record their own audio track.
The combination of the no skipping feature, embedded questions, and editing tools provided by EDpuzzle makes it easier for all students to maintain their focus, identify the key points being presented, and complete their work. Better yet, it gives the teacher the ability to crack down on those unmotivated students!
For more information on how EDpuzzle can be used in your classroom, check out the EDpuzzle Blog or watch the EDpuzzle videos embedded below.
Note: Images taken from EDpuzzle.com