Happy New Year

Happy New Year

Happy New Year

From my computer to yours, wishing you all the best for 2016 and a year which challenges and delights you.

Make a good You Tube video

With nearly 95 000 hits on this video alone and nearly 65 000 subscribers to his You Tube channel, then it is probably worth listening to what rickvanman has to say about making basic You Tube videos. My plan for 2016 is to improve my video making skills and work on my coding. Those are the next logical steps for me. Students always appreciate well made videos for learning and they value the time and skills you put into it. It also means you have a bank of resources for students who are absent for whatever reason and for students who want to fast track themselves. It is coming very much to the point where we are personalising learning. Students absorb material very quickly from moving images. The dark back drop on this one makes a point. You focus more on what is being said and it highlights there is a real person talking and sharing information with you. The tips are:

Be concise
Use good lighting
Use an external mic
Keep the music quiet so as not to distract
Avoid camera shake
Cut out the erms and ahhs
Keep it fast moving, fast paced and flowing…get on with it!

It is all practice and awareness raising. It is testing the water and building skills so you can deliver confidently.It is also questioning and assessing whether you actually want to put yourself in a video or just create content videos which are relevant.  Making a good video is something students need to learn too since theirs is very much an online sharing and collaborative world. They need to be able to have a positive, effective online image and style.

I can make videos which, from the feedback I have received, are helpful and useful to students. I want to lift myself up now and get even better at producing video content. It is the direction we are going in and no video can replace a good teacher but  videos are part and parcel of learning and teaching now because there are more and more sites which share video content. We are connected. rickvanman can teach anyone anywhere  in the world if they want to listen.

Do video games make you smarter?

Well, yes, apparently they do. The video is worth watching to see the patterns of thought about this and how research has discovered some interesting benefits of gaming. We need more research and we need more information about how gaming helps us. We need to the opposite too. We need to look at how gaming can be detrimental. We need to understand it better because games are ubiquitous. They keep people online more than anything else on the Net and they make squillions. The money making aspect of it means developers know how to keep people engaged and part with their cash! As teachers we need to intervene and look at the educational benefits, the learning outcomes and how they improve thinking. This way games and gaming will have a steadying force. My own experience is not THE experience but I certainly find games challenge me to think more flexibly, present me with problems to solve which force me to think more creatively and  push me in directions I don’t want to go and so I have to develop a strategy to counteract that .Games build self confidence and decision making competencies.  I do not want to be a victim when I play games and actively combat that as I play games. I have found using gaming principles in class for the last two years has lifted the skills and knowledge levels of my students. I  have been able to engage them easily and we have a lot of fun as we are working hard. Games involve us and the rest of the planet so much we need to get a better picture of what they can and can’t do for us.

Easy New Year greeting card

You might not want to send an electronic greeting for the New Year. You might actually want to make a greeting card. The beauty of the internet is that those with skills and ideas can share them. This is a very effective card and the video is composed so that interest and understanding are sustained. The idea of putting a paint brush in a compass is novel but as I sat and watched I was wondering if it would be that easy! Someone has a lot of skill. It is all about confidence. I guess if you couldn’t do the painted circles you could get the trusty textas out and draw around things…

Organise NYE greetings from your mobile

WhatsApp is a free cross platform messaging service without ads. It is also a site which offers some great ways of using mobile devices to connect for important occasions. Get the Happy New Year 2016 Greetings and send your friends and family their own e-greeting for the New Year. There are choices! So easy!

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