Kids love videos, right? Students enter into this multimedia experience where they… sit and watch. And often do nothing.
I’ve seen a number of big box math curricula that are clearly trying to address their predictable and uninspiring math curricula by offering VIDEOS where some puppet or animated character presents the math.
I’ve had the same reservations about the #FlipClass movement which traditionally makes heavy use of the video as a teaching tool. And I have the same problem with all of them: Very often, the students simply aren’t active participants in the presentation and thus aren’t learning nearly as well as they could be. (Derek Muller discusses this same point here…)
If we want the video to provide any tangible improvement over live presentations, we need to use the video to engage students in ways that live presentations can’t.
That’s where I think tools like EdPuzzle could be powerful. Check out Episode #9 of “Instructional Tech in Under 3 Minutes” up above. I like the potential of EdPuzzle (like I liked Zaption before it.) I agree that videos can be very effective tools. I’ve recommended them on many occasions (See Speedometer Problem, Pencil Sharpener Problem, or Dan Meyer’s Magic Octagon as examples.)
But videos aren’t an absolute good. And tools like EdPuzzle can help take the potential learning of videos and convert it to more kinetic learning.
I love slide shows. I do. They’re, like, the biggest mystery tool going. No tool has such a wide range of quality of use. I’ve actually seen some folks do some wonderful things with it. And I’ve seen some simply terrible slide show presentations.
It’s remarkable how little thought people put into the experience of their learners when they design their slides. So, that’s the key question with any presentation: What should the learners be doing while you are presenting? What should they be learning? Feeling? Experiencing?
Boredom is almost ALWAYS not a goal, I would expect. The key is giving the listeners / learners / audience something to DO while you present. Google had added a built-in “audience needs to do something” module to their slides application. Check out the video above.
I mean, it could be argued that there are times when a slideshow is appropriate. (Although there should be other options explored.) But they don’t have to be passive and boring. Check out the video above to see what Google has done to support better slideshows.
So, a while back, I posted “Circles from Cedar Street” with an intriguing (at least to me) picture designed to kick off the conversation about rotations.
Then, I left it alone. Like, literally. I didn’t solve it. I should have solved it. I let you down.
I especially let guys like Dan down, who also found the problem intriguing. Sorry about that.
But I realized today that it’s never too late to make it right. So, using Geogebra, here’s is one possible solution to the Circles from Cedar Street problem from back in August of 2013.
I have fun with these.
Real or Fake #6: Batting Practice
Now, the folks in the comment sections seem convinced this is fake, but the support for their answers is a little weak. (As opposed to most comment-section heroes who usually make much more nuanced arguments.)
What say you? Real or fake?
If you are curious, here’s all of my previous real-or-fakes.
First watch this (and be amazed… well, if you’re anything like I am.)
So, when the students can get past the idea that there is some foul play involved, then it becomes a wonderful opportunities to discuss the idea of frequency.
Frequency is an odd discussion because it’s got a strange unit. The “per time” can be a little challenging for students to wrap their heads around.
And the opportunity that this video provides is that here, we don’t need to immediately concern ourselves with the quantitative value of the frequency (maybe 300 RPM for the helicopter rotor, for example, or 5 frames per second on the camera), but we can begin with the qualitative value of the frequency (that the frequencies, whatever they are, are the same.)
And then it opens the door for them discussing some quantitative issues. For example, the fact that the standard unit of frequency (the “per unit time”), obviously isn’t constant. So, the helicopter rotor is RPM and the camera shudder is typically in frames per second (at least, I think. Not a photographer…) So, you’ve got some nice dimensional analysis opportunities.
Where could you take this next?
One thing’s for sure, I’d hate to waste a video like this. Fully captivating, and it only costs your 30 seconds of class time.
Source: I owe TwistedSifter credit for blogging about this video first.
A nice engaging intro to your unit on sound waves.
And as an applied project, perhaps students could make a smaller version. Paper towel rolls? Saran wrap? rubber bands?
Anyway, a lot of possibilities when a video is this well done.
Have fun with these, some of which seem just a little too amazing to be true. Maybe.