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Posts Tagged ‘youtube

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.


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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.

The best way to start change is to identify what needs changing in the first place. This seems so obvious as to sound redundant, but you have probably seen how blind change initiatives can be.

So if we are to desire change in schools, we must know what is wrong with them. Here are two videos that outline some critical issues.


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The video above highlights how most schools:

  • Are based on outdated Industrial Age values.
  • Do not promote student autonomy.
  • Perpetuate inauthentic learning.
  • Do not accommodate student passions.
  • Provide little or no room for individualisation.
  • Rely on lecturing.


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The video above uses social conflict theory to explore social inequalities that school reinforce or perpetuate. While the video focuses on schools embedded in US systems, the principles apply to any system that claims to be based on meritocracy.

Both videos shed light on what areas need urgent change.

Both videos are also not perfect — both equate education with schooling. They could have drawn distinctions between the two terms because both seemed to desire movement away from schooling and progress towards education.

Schooling is about enculturation. Education is about self-actualisation.

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.


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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.


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

Two days ago, I reminisced on my family’s time in the USA. Yes, the USA, not America.

Earlier this year, I explained why I insist on using “the USA” instead of “America”. My fuel then was a combination of geographical technicality and social inclusion.


Now I have more fuel in the form of YouTube videos. “America” is tainted — selective lenses from the press and social media bubbles sometimes sow doubt and disunity about These United States.
 

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The videos above portray the USA that I knew and experienced. This was the combined efforts of individuals and communities that operated on kindness, hope, and basic human decency.

Are they the minority? Yes, perhaps. But when you add all the minorities up, you get a majority. When you join these separate jigsaw pieces, you get a more complete picture of united states and the United States.

The USA is not just a function of its current leadership, its movies, and its broadcast media. It is about its people and what they do. Like every other country on earth, there are nasty and ignorant people there that get a lot of attention. The good ones go about their daily business without glory.

Shift your gaze and focus on the good to get a more balanced and accurate view. It is not disunited America; it is these United States of America.

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


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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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If I had to teach the concept of affordances in 10 minutes, I would use this video.

Most people use Excel to create spreadsheets and graphs. This Japanese retiree’s use of Excel to paint is an unexpected use of the program. The former is a designed or intended use. The latter is a perceived or negotiated use.

In education, we also speak of technical, social, and pedagogical affordances. These take longer than 10 minutes to teach and might require a lifetime to master.

Is there a master Japanese artist who might illustrate these affordances by accident?


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