Posts tagged ‘voicethread’

Saturday, 2nd April, 2011

Khan Academy and the Effectiveness of Science Videos | Action-Reaction

It is a common view that “if only someone could break this down and explain it clearly enough, more students would understand.” Khan Academy is a great example of this approach with its clear, concise videos on science. However it is debatable whether they really work. Research has shown that these types of videos may be positively received by students. They feel like they are learning and become more confident in their answers, but tests reveal they haven’t learned anything. [ed. note: textbook definition of pseudoteaching]

via Khan Academy and the Effectiveness of Science Videos | Action-Reaction.

This links to a recent PhD thesis that suggests that the cognitive load needs to be high to facilitate long term learning. This means it is important to include misconceptions.

Does the same apply to student created content? Is it valuable to create? Does student created content need to discuss misconception? How about with shared content – like subject review wikis?

Do things like the heart voicethread project have a high enough cognitive load? Could this be extended?

Friday, 11th February, 2011

Voicethread redux

A quick note about a couple of things:
As I write a group of 7th graders are completing a task using voicethread. In the first part there were two voicethreads I made from presentations on keynote. This is an easy make and then the students all commented.
Part two was to make a voicethread about a simple topic in a group of four.
Because the students were reusing a tool they had already used in science and in other areas, the start up time for this task was impressive – no lost passwords or any other how to questions – just straight in.
For the second task the collaboration has started well and the seem to be able to organise around this well.
The challenge is still that the language and content is a bit light and we need to be sure to challenge the depth – it seems that this may be something that could be built up over time as with the skills and confidence to use it. Some protocol to encourage this would be great.

Thursday, 7th October, 2010

Voicethread – what a mess!

Had the first session of the voicethread activity with the hearts today. There were a bunch of problems, the main one of which was that the lesson was reduced to 20 minutes and this was not enough to get the students accessing the site. Other issues incuded:

  • Distributing passwords – not easy on paper – how to do this better?
  • New students – one student had no knowledge of school email account and no VT account set up – I need to figure how to add this.
  • One student who had an old VT account from last year couldn’t use it because it had reached a 3 voicethread limit.
  • Getting photos out of flickr wasn’t intuitive.

All in all there was no science teaching done and only limited progress at getting some things logged in. It would have been better if I had not tried to start this project with limited time. Lessons like this need a backup.

Tuesday, 28th September, 2010

Goals and technology

Just a short post to note the coincidence of appraisal goal setting and some ICT preparation.

It may be possible to use some of the voicethread class as a relevant part of the appraisal process – e.g. if someone is in the class then feedback from that would be evidence of a peer observation. This would make the observation a bit more authentic.

To help with this it would possibly be a good idea to review the technology goals that Kim distributed.

Thursday, 9th September, 2010

Voicethread redux

With 7th grade classes it is time to run through a voicethread project again and a chance to work with IT support on a project.

So far Kim has set up all the voicethread accounts and so we are good to go with that part. There seem to be some issues with existing accounts so it is not possible at the moment to put them all in the same group, but this could be fixed by posting a link. As long as sharing pictures goes smoothly then this part should be fine.

The peer assessment through blog might be a big step further as this will also be a new tool for some of them and I am not even sure if these are all set up. This isn’t a necessary step in this project but would be useful to include if the blogs were likely to be used more.

It seems there may be an IT use committee being formed and this might be good to get involved with, time permitting.

Friday, 27th November, 2009

A different way of using voicethread

Another experiment using voicethread. I took one of the presentations for grade 7 and put the slides into a voicethread, then shared this with the class. After showing the presentation in class, I then got them to log on to it and post comments to it for eachother.

I think the potential use of this is to give students the oportunity to review things shown in class even if they don’t get everything into notes. It also lets them share things in a different way – kind of multi-modal.

I guess I would say it went well if the comments were on topic and there were plenty of them. We shall see.

The challenge was managing accounts and passwords. I have three separate accounts at the moment, which messes things up. Some are free one and have limits.

Here it is:

[voicethread b=759336]

(Doesn’t look possible to embed this here – apparently because wordpress doesn’t allow this)

By the way – just set up a logger pro lab – these can work really well, though the students are not well trained at following the instructions. The hardware is good, but some components needed checking

Wednesday, 18th November, 2009

File sharing for BTG

Having prepared a presentation for BTG, it would be useful to spend some time sharing this in a useful way.

Options for this are:

  • posting the ppt in googledocs – easy and includes presenter notes, but doesn’t play vids
  • posting the .doc in googledocs – easy and retains enough of the formatting
  • posting the ppt in slideshare – easy to do but loose the video elements and the presenter notes. This allows a soundtrack mp3 file to be added, and presumably then synced. This would be nice to try as it might have further application. How easy is the mp3 recording? This would make the lack of presenter notes redundant.
  • putting it in keynote and adding commentary – not sure I want to embark on this as there would need to be a few steps after that before sharing
  • Putting into voicethread and commenting – videos wouldn’t translate and the audio might be messy
  • videoing – more trouble than it is worth. This would require someone else to do this during the show
  • Adding to blog – this would be an addition to other steps

From this list it looks like the audio commentary for slideshare would be best as I would like to learn how this works – seems to have potential for student use. Will put in a tech request for this.

Can also publish the paper on docs and link both in this blog

Friday, 6th November, 2009

MS fac presentation

I am going to share some information about the voicethread project at the next faculty meeting. Points to make:

  • The students have learned to do something that might be useful in other contexts (e.g.?)
  • It would be beneficial if they could repeat aspects of the activity in a different context
  • Students might select this as an alternative presentation mode if reminded and encouraged
  • Our project was not great – it took too much time and the science was not deep enough – we will do it better next time
  • Biggest problems were: passwords, too many steps in the process, some access issues (network, accounts, computers), time, teacher time in class as tech trouble shooter for less confident students

There are some bookmarks of examples and stuff ready to go on my computer

Tuesday, 3rd November, 2009

Yet more voicethread hearts

This project continues.

We had a long break part way through – 2 weeks with field studies and October break. Despite this, the kids got back up to speed quite quickly. We aren’t at the end of the project yet, but there are still some opportunities for some observations:

When using the blogs, the students were not as familiar with them as I had expected. I think mostly they had not used these this year and new students didn’t have these. This meant that some steps took a lot more time. If students aren’t going to use blogs much, then maybe this stp isn’t needed in the process.

The sharing part of it is about to start. I think this part of formative assessment is one of the most likely productive aspects and so we will see what this yields.

Some students had network access problems. This was quickly fixed but meant that a fair bit of instructional time was spent tech trouble shooting rather that teaching and learning.

Adding a heart diagram into the thread was helpful to focus attention and to improve accuracy. This should be encouraged.

Having students work alone meant that some students less confident with tech or problem solving made very slow progress and needed a lot of one on one attention. I was concerned about how much of my time was spent on technical issues.

The total time to complete this project is more than I had hoped, and it isn’t finished yet. Hopefully there is payback if the skills get used again sometime soon – maybe I should mail their other teachers with a done sample.

Friday, 16th October, 2009

More on voicethread hearts

This project has been continuing. Here are a few observations:

What went well:

  • The system and logins all worked and the students could access and make the projects.
  • The students seemed to enjoy the work and were well engaged with it.
  • The pictures look good and the product looked professional quickly – they were proud of it.
  • Talking was fun for them, as was hearing their own voices

What was more difficult:

  • When the network didn’t work, the project didn’t. Then the whole thing was counterproductive.
  • Some students struggled with the multiple steps involved.
  • It took several lessons to get a product – let alone evaluate it.
  • The time taken by students was very variable.
  • The students didn’t make effective use of the screencasts for the most part.

These points need reflection, but I will leave that for now.

The next part will be to get some useful peer evaluation happening.