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Posts Tagged ‘video

No, the video below of Trump supporting the idea that teachers be armed with handguns is not a joke. I mean it is, but it isn’t.


Video source

The idea seems to be that some teachers should be trained to fire weapons when — not if — there is another school shooting. Apparently this is both a reactionary measure (teachers are already on the premises) and a preventative one (a would-be shooter would think twice about entering a saloon with armed cowboys).

So are the premises that 1) teachers are the type of people to be the first line of offensive defence, and 2) crazy or enraged people stop to consider the consequences of their actions?

It is hard to watch the entire video because it is hard to believe that this is even a suggestion. There was a terrible shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida last week and the suggestion is that they need more guns, not less.

I am not weighing in on the guns-in-the-US debate. I do not live there and I do not really have a say. But I am an educator, and what I do is not limited to borders.

I ask questions instead of providing answers I do not have:

  • What might pre and in-service courses for these teachers look like?
  • How might the recruitment and retention of teachers change?
  • What if an armed teacher misuses his or her gun?
  • What if the teacher hits an innocent?
  • Am I in a screwed-up Matrix?

Crash Course is one of the many YouTube channels I subscribe to. It has great content that is pitched at the layperson, but professional enough for use in most classrooms.


Video source

I am looking forward to their next series on “Media Literacy”.

From the announcement video above, I gather that it is not pitched at educators. It is not even designed and presented by an educator in the traditional sense of the word.

But I will be watching all twelve episodes and I am sure I will get an education. I hope to learn something new, to have some good ideas reinforced, and some bad ones challenged.

 
Here is another example of why propagators of “learning styles” do schooling and education a disservice.

An NBC correspondent highlighted a quote from a WaPo article:

For some context, here is an excerpt from the article

Trump has opted to rely on an oral briefing of select intelligence issues in the Oval Office rather than getting the full written document delivered to review separately each day, according to three people familiar with his briefings. 

Reading the traditionally dense intelligence book is not Trump’s preferred “style of learning,” according to a person with knowledge of the situation.

Say what you want about “learning styles”. If you are a teacher and what you say is not informed by research, then you dig you and your students into a hole. These “learning styles” become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

If you do not like reading words, here are lots of pictures instead. If you cannot listen attentively to someone, go outside and do something that somehow teaches you the same thing.

“Learning styles” can become an excuse to label yourself or someone else so that you or they do not have to try to learn something else some other way.

Do you and your students a favour and educate yourself on the fallacies of “learning styles”. Read this tweet storm — a response to an uncritical and irresponsible vendor — for a start.

You do not even need to read the research. Just question your conscience and logic — is it right and helpful for any learners to grow up with a limited set of tools and skills?


Video source

The video above highlights how “learning styles”:

  • have no research evidence that show that they improve learning
  • waste the time and effort of teachers who try to cater to different styles
  • label and limit people into believing they learn only or best in certain ways

Admit your bias, take the first difficult step of learning what research tells us, and unlearn “learning styles”. Your first step is any of the resources I have shared in Diigo, the articles mentioned in the tweetstorm, or the TED talk embedded above. Read, watch, or listen; choose your learning preference, but do not call it a learning style.

Learning is often difficult. If it was easy, it probably is not learning. Giving in to your uninformed bias that kids have “learning styles” may be easier, but that does not make it right.

You do not have to be an Apple fan to enjoy this video. It could have been shot on any device with a decent camera. It took good storytellers to put it together and that is what matters.


Video source

The video was a short movie commissioned by Apple to be shot on an iPhone X. It was Apple’s agenda and in their interest to promote the technical capabilities of its latest flagship phone.

But the technology without skill, passion, and a good story is pointless. One need only look at the phone libraries of wannabe food Instagrammers. A superior tool does not guarantee a superior outcome.

The video was technically well-shot and edited. It was also skilfully managed to tell the story of a mother connecting with her son even though she had to work over the Lunar New Year.

I liked how the movie “ended” so that the viewer could get involved. How so? I imagine an educator asking her students to suggest how the rest of the story continues and why.

The story also revealed the director’s agenda. He made a statement about modern parenting and the pressure of schooling without throwing it like pie in the face. He tugged at heartstrings to make his point firmly but gently.

The video is a lesson on narrative design, leveraging on emotions to create impact, and letting viewers or learners draw their own conclusions by generating discussion. These are the new standards for what makes a resource high in quality and effective for facilitation.

A Netflix watch-worthy series is David Letterman’s “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction”.


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It is not binge-worthy because they are released episode by episode instead of an entire series. The episodes are interviews, so they might not be light enough to take in at one go.

But they are worth watching because of some of the people that Letterman interviews. The first episode featured former US President Barack Obama. There will be another episode with Malala Yousafzai.

I watched the Obama episode and it was inspiring and insightful. I was particularly taken by the snippets of Letterman crossing the Edmund Pettus bridge with Congressman John Lewis.

Folks in my part of the world probably do not know who John Lewis is and what the bridge represents. A recent Washington Post article will shed some light on this important moment in the US Civil Rights movement.

John Lewis speaks with a gravitas today as much as he did as a young man. Watch his interview with MSNBC and his responses to Trump’s racist (“shit hole”) remarks.


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In light of the racial tensions that persist in the US and the deadly event in Charlottesville, Virginia, one might wonder if there has been any progress since John Lewis marched and worked with Martin Luther King. Letterman brought that up and Lewis had a poignant response:

… in the whole struggle there may be some setbacks, some delays, some interruption, but you take a long hard look. We will get there.

Any agent of worthwhile change should be encouraged by Lewis’ words when faced with some setbacks, some delays, and some interruption.

Lewis lived that struggle first hand and has the benefit of hindsight. He also has the wisdom of believing in belief, hope, and better days ahead. The situation is better now than before and Obama as US President for two terms is evidence of that.

I watched this WatchMojo video on the Top 10 Craziest Ways People Quit Their Jobs.


Video source

While entertaining, I hope this does not inspire people to tie personal change to grabbing attention. Most people do not leave with a bang, but that does not mean you do not have to leave a mark.

I recall my parting message when I left NIE in 2014 — be happy.


Video source

It is one thing to say live and let live. It is another to say how to live that life.

I was primed when I noticed a video waiting in my subscriptions list in YouTube, Educational Technology: Crash Course Computer Science #39.


Video source

I wanted to know what the presenter had to say about the wide field that is educational technology. The video had a good start — it pointed out that while there was a lot of information online, not all of this information would lead to learning.

The presenter then went on to suggest how to turn an informational video to an educational one. Here were some basic tips on leveraging on online videos like YouTube:

  1. Set the speed to balance the need to understand the content and also be able to reflect on it
  2. Pause for a metacognitive cause, e.g., reflect on takeaways, select strategies, anticipate what comes next
  3. Practice worked examples for active learning

Any learner work needs feedback. The quality of feedback is arguably among the most important factors that influence learning. It is also the most difficult and subjective especially when the number of students far exceeds the number of teachers.

How might edtech help in the area of feedback? The video suggested:

  1. Algorithm-based grading of assignments
  2. Algorithm-informed suggestions for more personalised materials, i.e., intelligent tutoring system

While these are nothing new to those in the edtech field, the video provided more depth on how the algorithms are shaped, e.g., Bayesian knowledge tracing.

The video was a great example of what sets an educational video apart from a merely informational one. Even its duration (under 12 minutes) seemed to be an application of research on designing videos for learning.


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