When students are bored, uninterested in your stories or videos, and need to be energized… Have them make a video!
It makes them the star of the show and they all want to look and sound their best on camera. Recording videos in class always takes longer than I plan for them to, but it is well worth the time spent!
Give them a scenario that they can relate to and can respond to in their own unique way. Make sure they have a specific task/job to complete like…
- web-cam recordings of “sick patients” describing their symptoms and pains
- “Getting to know each other” video – name, age, personality traits, and what you like to do
- BuscandoAmor.com – pretend dating website where each person decribes the perfect boyfriend/girlfriend
- Song lyrics – If we are learning a song with great vocab I will divide it up and give each group a few lines. They either have to act it out while singing or hold pictures up when they say that certain word. Then, each part together turns into a class music video!
Use a digital camera or flipcam or ipad (if you don’t have one, check your library or see if one of your students has one the class can use). I have iPads now, but my first 2 years teaching all my students recorded on 1 camera! I was constantly recharging that battery! I usually make a sign-up sheet. When a student or group of students is ready, they sign up. This creates order in the midst of chaos.
I think the recording stage is the most important for learning! They make mistakes and try again and again. This practice is so beneficial. I love to see the students helping each other with pronunciation and teaching each other. Also, many learn more than what is required because they want to make a joke or add something extra to their video.
After RecordingInstead of showing all the videos individually, I recommend that they be edited. I like to blend them in to one class video. It’s great to have it transition from one person to the next without all the longs pauses. Plus, then we can all sit back and watch! I just take the best clips from each student to make them all look good! I also almost always show a set of goofy bloopers at the end. I don’t want to embarrass anyone, but I think it eases the tension of trying to be perfect when students see others mess up what they are trying to say.
When you show them in class, have the students watch it 3 times…
1.) Watch for fun
2.) Watch and self-assess (What did I do well? What can I work on?)
3.) Listen for specific info… (you could post a few random questions)
Do your students record videos in class? Any tips to share with us? What has been a fun project or video your classes have made?