I never thought I would be a teacher who used video. And I certainly never thought video would be one of the best time-saving tips for teachers. How could it save time when it takes so long to learn?
You’ve used new technology in the past. You went to trainings or figured out the technology yourself. But once you tried it out in your classroom, you found it useless. Sound familiar?
Video is different. It saves so much time, it feels like cheating.
But I hear you. It sounds hard, right? I used to feel that way. About ten years ago, I went to a summer teacher tech “camp.” (I was taking it for the credits, to bump up my paycheck.) It was designed for tech dimwits like me. But the video tools we learned felt clunky and unmanageable. So I dropped video like dirty kid slime.
Recently, I discovered that video had a makeover. It’s finally — FINALLY — created for busy people like you and me.
Today, you’ll learn 6 unusual ways video will save you time. Then you’ll learn how to make a video. And then, your life will change.
How Will Video Save Me Time?
#1: Time Saving Tips for Messaging Families
Need to contact your families? Instead of spending half an hour typing the perfect email, click record and talk.
I used to spend crazy amounts of time writing families. Now? It takes about 5 minutes of recording — if that — and I’m done.
HUGE time-saving win.
What you might record for families:
- Explain a homework change
- Give tips on helping kids study for an upcoming test
- Explain how Google Classroom works
- Show them where to find your feedback
- Remind them of an upcoming Spirit Day
Don’t worry about editing or making it perfect. Just record. Be yourself. Click Finish Recording. Save. And Send.
Your families will love you for it. It might be scary — especially the first time — as you’ll see all the glaring errors. But families won’t bat an eye. Video is more entertaining than email and won’t get lost in the shuffle.
Plus, families can better understand with video visuals. Which results in a dramatic decrease of confused parent emails. Think about THAT!
Below is a video I sent to my families about our Southeast United States practice tests. I made mistakes, said “um” a lot, and my dogs barked at the UPS truck. But it’s fine. The parents got the message. And the result? The kids studied for the test because the parents were completely on board. Nobody cared that my video was flawed.
#2 Save Time Explaining Directions to Students
You can shave time off your schedule with video instructions for your students.
Below is an example of sharing an idea with my kids on our Friday Multiplication Challenges. Again, I did zero editing on this because the point was to save time.
#3 Introducing a Website in Less Time
Is your district using a new paid site this year? Do your kids need to log on and learn how to use it? Use video to show them. They can return to that video for a refresher.
I did this with Get Epic last spring. When a child or parent emailed to say they forgot how to log in, I’d resend the video link. Easy peasy.
#4 Time Saving Tips on Teaching New Technology
Regardless of where or how you teach, creating short videos on tech procedures will save time.
Ideas for Technology Videos that Will Save You Time
- Find your assignments for the week
- Turn in your work
- Log in
- Navigate between tabs
- Share a document with your teacher
- Respond to comments
- Create a slideshow
- Use Google Earth
- Enter a page break in Google Docs
Below is a video I created for our school’s 4th graders. I introduced them to Google Earth.
You’ll notice there are loads of blurred out areas and even a whole section I cut out. I did this before posting here to protect my privacy and my school’s privacy. 🙂 Normally I don’t do heavy editing like that. (The super blurry areas stop at 1:30.)
As you’ll see, things went wrong. Rather than rerecord, though, I kept it. This saved time AND modeled for students what to do when things don’t go as expected. Keep the mistakes in your video and make them teachable moments.
And since this video was in Google Drive, the students and parents could revisit it.
#5 Save Time with Read Alouds
Ever try doing read aloud online? It’s hard to keep kids paying attention that long without losing their marbles. Instead, consider recording a chapter of a read aloud on your own and sending it to the kids.
Recording a read aloud not only takes less time, it lets kids enjoy it in their own way. They can listen while making a snack at home. Or while jumping on their trampoline, or sitting in the car. They can even listen to you while cleaning their room.
You can take it up a notch. Record each read aloud in a different spot and have the kids guess where they think you are!
Teachers on your team can read aloud different books and then share the videos with each other’s classes. So children can have 2 or more read-alouds going on at once!
#6 Recording Specific Lessons Saves Time
Recording all your lessons isn’t one of the time-saving tips for teachers. (Anything but!) But recording specific ones is.
Let’s say your class struggles with subtraction and trade-first. You can do an online lesson that they can return to when they get stuck. That won’t work for every student, but it will work for many, thus saving you time reteaching.
Think of a lesson you’ve had to reteach. Start there and make a short video for that and notice how often you end up using it.
Screencast-O-Matic or Loom: Which is Better for Saving Time?
Loom and Screencast-O-Matic aren’t the only video tools out there. But they’re both terrific for teachers who want to save time. Watch each video below to see how they can work for you.
Whichever you choose, you will save time. And you’ll leave work earlier.
I’m excited to see how this goes for you! Once you try it, come back to share the ways video has saved time in YOUR classroom.
In the comments below, let us know:
- Do you create videos in your classroom? Which video service do you use? Do you have any time-saving tips for teachers on using video?
- OR … If you haven’t tried this yet, how do you think videos would save YOU time in your classroom ?
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