Saturday, February 5, 2011

Week 4 Blog Post-You Tube Create a blog post about your experience with You Tube. What do you like or dislike about the site and why did you choose the video that you did?

     I have experience utilizing You Tube as an educational tool, as well as for my personal use.  I decided to include another You Tube video of how I have used it as an educational tool.  I embedded a You Tube video of my Science Bowl Club team I sponsored and coached last year.  The school district I teach for, Prince George’s County Public Schools, utilized You Tube as a way to share and promote our burgeoning Science Bowl and S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) program.  All of the district television produced Science Bowl competitions were added to You Tube.  Not only did this highlight our students’ science skills, but it gave other students from our district and around the world a chance to watch and learn Science Trivia and concepts.  I used the You Tube video of some of the Science Bowl competitions as an educational tool.  Since it is a Jeopardy-like game format I had my students use sticky notes to write down answers and see how many questions they could answer correctly.  They were really motivated and excited to see if they could one day get in the competition.

     In regard to my personal use outside of teaching, I use You Tube for help in exercise techniques and proper form.  I am an avid weightlifter and love working out.   I chose the Kettle bell swing video with Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins because it is a prime example of how I utilize You Tube to learn how to correctly perform an exercise.  I like how I can replay and pause the video at key junctures to learn a technique.  It is beneficial to have the ability to view the video multiple times to help me in visualizing how I can perform the exercise correctly.  I also like how You Tube provides similar videos to the right side of they video you are currently viewing.  Often times, I find great video clips from the suggested links that are even better than the one I searched for originally.  This can lead me to spending more time than I originally planned exploring video clips of exercises.  Honestly, it is one of the aspects of the Internet 2.0 that I really enjoy.

     One idea I am exploring is using You Tube as a way to tutor students.  If I could capture video clips of how to do math skills it would help my elementary students tremendously.  In the area of Physical Education, I would like to provide video of proper form and technique for motor skills and sport specific movements in team sports like basketball and tennis.  Then I could provide a hyperlink on the school website where I work to share it with students.  I feel students really gravitate to You Tube.  Like many members of our cohort have mentioned in previous discussions, as educators we need to meet our students in the Web 2.0 technologies that they embrace.  It will make a better connection between students and teachers, and help bridge a richer learning environment where students have more autonomy and freedom.

     The only drawback to You Tube is that there is junk video on there, too.  I think some adults view You Tube negatively as a site where people try to become famous or use it for humor.  While I do enjoy watching some of the ridiculous and funny video clips, I think You Tube gets a bad rap and many people dismiss its educational merit.  Personally, I feel You Tube can be a very powerful educational tool that educators can utilize in their teaching arsenal.  Students use You Tube on a daily basis, so it makes sense that we as teachers learn to use it as a supplementary resource.  The key is to view You Tube video clips beforehand to evaluate their merit and decency.  You don’t want to just see the title or subject of the video and show it to students as this can lead to a possibly embarrassing situation of inappropriate content being shown.  Overall, I am a proponent of using You Tube as an educational tool.  It is a great way for teachers to connect with students’ visual, spatial learning style/modalities.

Embedded below is a You Tube video of the Vansville Elementary Science Bowl Team I sponsored and coached last school year 2009-2010.  I actually get a very short cameo appearance at the end of the video when the host, Dave Zahren, introduces all the team members and coaches of the teams.  So now I am officially on You Tube, which is neat.

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