A Powerful Way to Teach With Videos

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Just recently, someone in a Facebook group suggested a website:  www.edpuzzle.com.  So I, of course, checked it out.  I am so happy I did!  If you are using video with your students, then YOU must check it out, too!  In a nutshell, EdPuzzle allows you to add audio notes, audio tracks, clip videos AND...the best part.... ADD questions to the video!  The process was very easy and intuitive and within 15 minutes I had created my first lesson using EdPuzzle.

In this post, I will show you how to get started with EdPuzzle.  Just a note, I have NO affiliation with the creators of EdPuzzle.   I did ask for their permission to post screen shots (which they gave me permission to do).  It's just such a cool site, I had to share!  Also, I'm in a 1:1 classroom with Chromebooks, so each of my students has access to technology daily.


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Let's get started with signing up.  Just go directly to edpuzzle.com and choose Teacher to sign up.  As you can see, if you already have a Google account, just sign up with Google.   If you don't have a Google account, I would recommend getting one (it's free!), so that you can also use Google Classroom.  The best part about signing up is if your students also have a Google account, they will also sign in using Google.




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The next step you'll want to do is to set up a class.  You can set up as many classes as you want.  If you have Google Classroom, you can just import your classes from Google Classroom like I did.  Even though I teach third grade, I make many different classes for my students based on the subject so it is easier to find assignments.

Then, you'll want to check out the dashboard.  From here you can navigate to search for content, your own content, your classes and your account.



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Searching for content can be done in several ways.  Click on the Search tab and search for a topic. Immediately, you'll be shown available videos from YouTube and other channels that connect with your topic.




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As you can see from the picture, you can search content by topic, by video channel or if you know which video you want and have a URL, you can just type in the URL.  That is important to me because in my district if I want students to be able to watch a YouTube video, I first have to approve it for watching in my district.  If I don't do that, the video will not play on their Chromebooks.  So I always search for content directly on YouTube first, then approve it, grab the URL and type it into the search bar on edpuzzle.com.



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Once I've selected my video, I can now work on creating an assignment.  EdPuzzle gives you several options for your assignment:  cropping the video, adding audio notes, adding an audio track and adding questions.  To crop the video, just move the red markers to the point you want the video to start or to end.




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I have not yet played with this option of adding audio notes and an audio track.  One very excellent feature about edpuzzle.com is that there are video tutorials available at each step in the process of creating an assignment.  So if you get stuck, just watch the tutorials because they are linked on the same page.  Adding an audio track or notes is a wonderful option to have especially if you have English Language Learners.  If the video uses vocabulary or has a concept that is difficult or abstract, adding your own audio explanation to make it more comprehensible is an important option to have.





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Here is the feature that truly transforms video watching.  I have already been using video in my classroom since the beginning of the school year.  I create many Interactive Digital Notebooks that integrate the use of videos for content.  My resources have linked videos that were carefully chosen by me to make sure they have the content necessary for answering research questions.  I have thoroughly taught my students on how to take video notes and provide them graphic organizers to do this.  Over time, they've gotten very good at using their video notes to construct short responses to questions.




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But with edpuzzle.com, however, you can now use video as an assessment! As the teacher, you can decide where in the video to add the question.  Just pause the video at the selected point, click on the green box with the question mark and you are ready to add your first question.  It's that easy!  You can also select the type of question you want to add:  short response or open-ended and multiple choice.  The multiple choice questions can also have more than one correct answer (great for practicing those questions that say MARK ALL THAT APPLY).




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Another nice option is that you can also add images and links in the question box as well.  If you look at the above picture, you'll see I added some clip art of a Viking longboat to the question about how the features of a Viking longboat allowed the Vikings to travel to many places far away.


Once you are done adding your questions, it's time to assign it to students.  If you are using Google Classroom, it's a snap.  First, you will select a class to assign it to by just clicking on the check box for that class.




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Then it's time to just post it on your Google Classroom with just 3 steps.




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Once in Google Classroom, you'll just create a new assignment and fill in the details.  Click assign and it's done!  Your class will now be able to use the assignment from Google Classroom.  Once they click on the assignment in Google Classroom, they will be taken directly to edpuzzle.com and asked to log in.  Students will just click on the RED button to log in with Google.  From there, they go directly to the video assignment.




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As the students work on the video assignment, the video will automatically pause at each place you've inserted a question (green boxes).  They can not continue until the question is answered.  They can rewind the video to watch that segment again if need be.  You as the teacher have the option to click on a settings box to prevent skipping or going ahead (highly recommended).  Once the student answers the question, they continue until the assignment is complete.


But wait!  Don't you want to know how they answered? Of course!  EdPuzzle keeps track of answers and will automatically score the mutliple choice questions.  For the short response or open-ended questions, you can score those directly from your screen.  EdPuzzle will give you a snapshot of how the student did.




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There are options to download the scores and data as .csv files.


There you have it!  I asked my students after they had done two assignments this way if it was easier to have the questions come up during the video or have to answer the questions after the video had ended.  Without hesitation, they all said it was easier to answer questions while watching video segments.

Here's a video of a student watching then answering a question:




video




So that brings up an important idea.  On the SBAC test, students sometimes have to watch a video or listen to an audio file.  Maybe they should look at the questions FIRST, before watching or listening so they know what they know what information to listen for.

I will continue to use this site during the year with my students.  I see lots of possibilities to use the site with my upcoming units on Explorers, the Solar System, and American Symbols and Landmarks.

Let me know if you have already used this site.  I would love to hear how you use it!  If you are planning to use it, let me know how it goes!

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