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Resource Watch: Using Video Clips in the Classroom

Videos can be a great tool for introducing a lesson, engaging students, or demonstrating an elusive concept. But any teacher who's attempted a Google or YouTube search for a classroom-worthy clip knows what a futile effort that can be—i.e., you emerge from the rabbit hole several hours later surrounded by empty Coke cans, your lesson plan-template still blank ... .

To help teachers avoid that scenario, KQED's Minshift recently published a "Teacher's Guide to Using Videos." In this 17-page PDF, Catlin Tucker offers links to websites that provide two kinds of videos: instructional videos, which she defines as those used for "explain[ing] complex concepts" and "replacing traditional lectures," and supplemental videos, which she says "pique interest, drive inquiry, motivate exploration and problem solving, [and] expand on concepts." The sites seem especially geared toward history and science teachers, but they could be good places to start for all teachers.

Tucker, an English teacher who published a book on blended learning and has written for Education Week Teacher about tech in the classroom, also provides tips on curating your own videos (i.e., escaping the rabbit hole) and how to use videos to drive student discussions and deep thinking. In addition, she touches on flipped classrooms and leaves readers with "10 great examples of educational videos" (how could students not be interested in a video entitled "Does wearing a hat keep you warm while dancing naked?").

To be clear, the guide does not cover using video for professional development purposes. But if you're looking for video examples of effective teaching, we've partnered with the Teaching Channel to curate those for you. Head to our featured video page.

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