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ABCs of Video in Sophia

ABCs of Video in Sophia

Author: Mark Flannery

Provide instruction and tips on adding video to your learning packet.

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Video Method Montage

Here are sample videos clipped from Sophia learning packets. They demonstrate how videos appear using the various methods described above. I hope this gets your creative juices flowing...

Lights - Camera - Action!

Video is an extremely powerful way to teach and make presentations. Video allows learners at a different place and time to be right there with the teacher. It allows learners to go at their own pace, backing up and fast forwarding as it suits their learning. And there are so many different ways to use video to capture your teaching.

Video camera method - This is the good old traditional way of creating a video - by using a video camera. Of course, these days a digital video camera is the way to go and many digital cameras have recording capabilities. And you can even use high quality cell phones to do the job. Using a video camera works well for recording yourself at a whiteboard, chalkboard, or flipchart. Or use a web cam to provide a short video introduction for your learning packet.  Video cameras also work great for demonstrations and for taking your teaching to the street.

Screen Recording method - This is a relatively new way to capture video and audio and can be very powerful. A screen recording is a digital recording of your computer screen output. This turns your computer screen into a creative canvas.  Record a slide show presentation while providing narration to bring your ideas to life.  Or do a demonstration using the Internet.  You can even turn a paint program into your own whiteboard.  The possibilities are truly endless.  And best of all, a screen recording tool is built right into Sophia!  Just record your screen using our tool and load it right into your learning packet.

Document camera method – Document cameras are beginning to pop-up in classrooms around the world. Document cameras are real-time image capture devices for displaying an object to classrooms. What many teachers do not know is they can also be used to capture video and audio. Most document cameras have video recording capability built right in.  Or you can even use Sophia’s screen recording tool to record your document camera output.  Document cameras are great for capturing detailed writing, such as math formulas.  Anything that works well with an overhead projector will work great with a document camera.

Interactive whiteboard method – One of the most exciting educational technologies showing-up in classrooms around the world is the interactive whiteboard. An interactive whiteboard is a large whiteboard that is interacts with a computer and projector. The projector displays the computer's desktop onto the whiteboard surface where users control the display using a pen, finger or other device. Like the document camera, this equipment almost always comes with a screen recording program that allows you to capture video and audio of your teaching session. So not only can you create great instructional videos, but you can do it while teaching your class.  And capturing your lecture is a great way to give your students a way to review your lectures at their own pace, while doing their homework.  Many teachers like that this method because it takes their body, usually with their back to the audience, out of the picture. This allows the learner to focus on the curriculum and instruction.

Embedded YouTube and Vimeo method – Last, but not least, there is a wealth of wonderful instructional videos available on YouTube and Vimeo.  Sophia allows you to embed these videos right into your learning packet.  These videos can be great supplements to your work and can help you drive key points home.

File size note:  Using the video camera, document camera, and interactive whiteboard methods will have you creating video files that you will load into Sophia.  Sometimes these files can become quite large, particularly if you record them in high-definition.  Sophia has a 500 MB file size limit so we encourage you to break long videos into short segments (< 10 minutes) and to do your recordings at lower resolutions (640x480 or 320x240).  Also, Video compression can be your friend. With many of today’s HD recording devices, file sizes can become huge in a hurry. To load these files can take a while if you have low bandwidth. For PC users you can use Windows Movie Maker to convert large AVI files to WMV files. For Mac users you can use iMovie to convert large MOV files to MP4 files.  See getting started tutorials for Windows Movie Maker and Apple iMovie for help with compressing your video files.

Finally, there is a PDF available for download and printing at the bottom of this learning packet with the descriptions above and some video recording tips.

I hope you have a rewarding experience creating your videos in Sophia.

Using the Screen Recording Method

Video Camera Recording Tips

Uploading Videos into Sophia

Using a Digital Video Camera

Using a Document Camera

Using an Interactive Whiteboard

ABCs of Video in Sophia

Making these notes available in case you would like to download and print out.