Student Made Videos

Here are seven reasons why teachers should join the CrossBraining Nation in using powerful student made videos in the classroom:

  1. Promotes Creativity
  2. Promotes Student Metacognition
  3. Student Review
  4. Motivates Teachers
  5. Formative Assessment
  6. Informs Administration
  7. Instant Lesson Database

Reason 1. Creativity.  Giving a student the opportunity to be creative is not always easy but it is incredibly important.  Teachers are often nervous about giving their students the freedom to explore ways in showing their learning because, let’s face it, it means that they might not be able to do it, there are risks involved.  If a teacher guides them and gives them some tools to show off their learning, the students might just surprise you, in fact, it happens all the time.  

Yes, there will be a few students who need explicit instructions on how to create their video but when you see what some of your students do with little to no guidance, that is when you will realize that it is worth it.  Last week, my class was given the task to create a beverage container along with a 3D printed cap that went on top of their bottle.  They also needed to create their own label and make a 15 or 30 second commercial promoting their drink.  I had a group of girls who did not ask me one question all week and simply needed me out of their way.  They approached me on Friday and said, “do you want to see what we did?” I was a little nervous because remember, they were basically on their own all week, of their own choosing.  I thought, “I’m not sure.”  I asked them what their beverage was called and they said, “Ghost Water.”  What they showed me (their video), gave me chills. It was awesome.  They let their creativity go wild and you could tell they had a blast making this and putting it all together.  I started giving them high fives and all the students wanted to see it.  I told the students that they would have to wait until we unveiled all the videos the following week.  Even though not one other student saw the video yet, I could tell that others knew and wanted to up their game.  Creativity encourages competition, excites students, and reveals talents.  Teachers who give their students the space and tools to be creative are the ones who are giving their students the opportunity to find out who they are and what talents they have.  

Reason 2. Metacognition.  CrossBraining centers its lessons around metacognition.  We can’t say this enough that when a student is in charge of demonstrating their learning, they catch mistakes and make improvements on their own. They think about what they learned and they own it. When teachers give them an authentic audience, metacognition goes into overdrive.

Reason 3.  Review.  Student review usually consists of going back through papers and locating the right information to review. If a student has multiple short 35 second videos of their learning and used key terms from the standards, review is now a simple touch of the button. Here is a scenario I would like you to think about. What if a teacher said, “go back and watch the videos you made on September 5th to review the Science and Language Arts concepts we went over and feel free to watch other student videos that were made in class.” CrossBraining believes this is idea needs to be explored and we believe it is a method that students will respond to and love as an option for review.

Reason 4. Teacher Motivation.  Teachers rise up when they are talking about one of their favorite lessons and even get pumped when talking about it. If teachers have their students capturing their learning taking place in the classroom, you better believe that the lesson is going to be great. No teacher is going to have their students capture boring lessons. When districts adopt the Crossbraining Method, the teachers’ metacognition kicks in as well and the teachers instinctively demand more of themselves because they know there is a window to their classrooms.

When teachers begin sharing videos, great lessons rise up and become the expectation that the teachers have placed on themselves.  No principal or building administrator will have to tell them to step up, it happens authentically.  Let’s also talk about what happens when a teacher starts seeing the creative ways that students demonstrate the learning in their room.  When my students showed me “Ghost Water” and nailed every expectation, you better believe that I was pumped.  The teacher will see their lessons come alive through the interpretation of the student.  The teacher gets stoked and it drives them to go harder on the next lesson.  It is cool when an administrator says, “nice job”. It feels good, but when you get students high fiving you and other students, that is over the top.

We will explore the next three reasons later this week.  Give student made videos a try.  Let your students show their learning! The CrossBraining Method really works!