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Category: Educational Videos

6th
Nov 2013

A Powerful Educational Tool

Last night I was laying in bed thinking about the Zane Education service. I work for Zane in the UK so obviously I think a lot about the products we offer, but last night it suddenly hit me exactly how powerful a tool these videos/quizzes and other resources are. I was thinking back to when I was at school and I remember how I felt when I sat down to study. Looking at that pile of books in front of me would being a sense of depression upon me. there were so many more exciting things I would like to have been doing at that moment.  (more…)


6th
Apr 2012

Teaching With Subtitled Educational Video

Teaching and Providing Equal Access in the Classroom

With up to 94% of teachers now using educational videos in the classroom as a valued teaching resource, it is interesting to see that many teachers use online educational video that only benefits some of their students and not all.

Video produced and originally intended for television distribution, and video of conference presentations is not video that is going to be particularly effective for teaching K-12 curriculum subjects. Content used to effective deliver curriculum should be developed specifically for that purpose. But yet many teachers are attempting to use that type of video because that is all they believe is available.

But there is much more to it that this. If teaching with educational video is to be effective, it must provide access for all students in the classroom, and not just some.

The soundtrack must be specially prepared so as to be able to provide that content to the blind student or the child with visual impairments.

The video should now by Federal Law, include the use of subtitles, otherwise known as closed captions. This of course provides for the deaf student, or those children with hearing impairments.

Those subtitles should be provided using enlarged fonts that are easy to read, again for those students that have mild visual impairment.

And then there is the need to provide for different Learning styles. By providing video with both specially prepared sound tracks and subtitles positioned in a dedicated position at the bottom of the video, we provide each child with the choice of watching, listening to, or reading each presentation, and in doing so we are provide for the widest range of Learning Styles.
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24th
Mar 2012

Online Educational Video

 

Review and Compare Online Educational Video Services

As many as 94% of teachers are doing it in the classroom, an increasing number of Home Educators are beginning to do it, and even the parents and caregivers of Special Needs students are now understanding why they need to do it.

Doing what?

Using online educational video as a powerful and potentially very beneficial teaching aid, that what!

There is no doubt that the audio visual nature of video and movies as an educational tool is extremely useful, after all it is a powerful form of Visual Learning. But choosing which educational video service to use can be like trying to compare apples with oranges.

A recent survey of the many websites now offering online video for educational purposes reveals the good, the bad, and the downright ugly side of what can only be described in most cases as a very misleading situation.

For a start if you are going to use video for teaching children a selection of curriculum topics, it is stating the obvious that you need to use educational video that was designed specfically for the purpose. Trying to use video content that was original designed for television programming and enterainment can hardly be described as being aligned to National or State Standards.

Then of course you have the issue of educational video that is not subtitled. This type of video, no matter how good the content, is essentially only doing 66% of the job. Children – whether they be Special Needs or not – need to have the choice to watch, listen to or read each presentation. It is this that caters for the widest range of Learning Styles and abilities. In fact in 2010 the Government passed laws requiring video providers to provide subtitles – otherwise known as closed captions. Yet because this is the Internet, many providers simply ignore these requirements which is testament to a very prevalent attitude that is if it’s video, and if it’s of a general educational nature, it’s good enough.
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28th
Jun 2011

Educational Video and The K12 Curriculum

Wasting Money in Education – 50 State Curriculums?

I was recently given the job of conducting some research on Education in India and the current state of the education market in India.

One of the first things I discovered to my surprise was that in a country of 1.2 billion people with over 250 million students in the K12 age range at school, was that the country basically had one education curriculum.

At first I thought I had made a mistake, so I checked with our new office in India only to discover that was correct. A country that many consider third-world, does have an education system that essentially operates using one single curriculum.

So why on earth does a country like the United States – supposedly a world leader – a country with less than a quarter of India’s population and just 20% of that number of students, require 50 different State curriculums?

Are children in Los Angeles so totally different from children in New York or Florida? Of course not. So what on earth can possibly justify such a gross waste of time, energy and money, in a time when education appears to be under-funded and increasingly ineffective?

Can you imagine having 50 different financial currencies in one country, or a motor vehicle manufacturer like Ford making 50 different versions of a particular model of car, one for each State? Of course not. So why is it the case in education? (more…)


7th
May 2011

The Power of Combining Educational Videos with Subtitles

They say that every cloud has a silver lining, however sometimes it is not always obvious at first glance. And sometimes it can take as long as four years for that silver lining to become obvious. And this is one such situation that I going to share with you.

As the founder of Zane Education, it just on 10 years ago that I made a successful offer to buy a company called Zane Publishing Inc., a company that had previously been one of the leading educational software publishers, developing over 260 CD-ROM titles to provide teaching and testing for 260 topics  for the K-12 curriculum.

The reason for wanting to buy Zane Publishing was simple.  I could envision a time when being able to deliver so much wonderful curriculum-based educational content online would be invaluable. So here we are several years later having produced – and now delivering on the Zane Education website – over 1,000 online educational videos, with each of the 260 topics across 11 subjects, being provided with online interactive quizzes containing over 23,000 questions that continue the learning process by explaining why each answer is correct or incorrect.

The fact that every video was captioned, or provided subtitles – now being called by some as SMS or ‘same language subtitles’ – was purely coincidental because that was the original format provided by the original software. Some have described this style of presentation dated or old-fashion, however we understood that by presenting the videos in this format we provided each child with the option to watch, listen to, or read each presentation, and in doing so, catering for a range of learning styles and abilities. But I will be the first to admit that I never fully appreciated the true value of what we had.

The fact that all of our educational video content is developed specifically to meet the requirements of the curriculum – and not simply video of a general educational nature, and because we are able to provide such a valuable form of online testing – again specifically developed originally to help continue the learning process, we are well aware that our service offers a significantly better educational solution than  those other websites simply providing collections of video of just a general educational nature. So in providing a service that truly has a potential global audience, we recently made the decision to launch a fund-raising that would bring in equity investors to give us the financial strength to market our online subscription service, much more effectively. (more…)


29th
Jan 2011

Visual Learning for Hearing Impaired Students

Subtitled Videos for Education of the Hearing Impaired Child

We begin this fifth article in the series about Visual Learning by stating the obvious, that educational videos that have been developed specifically to teach the K12 curriculum, and that purposely provide dedicated subtitles, provide an improved, effective and enjoyable way of delivering learning and education for the hearing impaired student or the child with hearing difficulties, and will encourage self-motivation towards a continuation of that learning experience. Or in simple terms, the hearing impaired student will enjoy this new and more meaningful way of learning, and as a result they are going to want to continue using it.

Children generally benefit greatly from Visual Learning. The use of educational video introduces that important element of fun to the learning process, it delivers the curriculum content in a graphical format that makes learning interesting, it enables and encourages them to learn at their own speed thereby enabling them to achieve their greatest potential, it provides a more compelling alternative to the textbook that often does little to inspire or motivate the student, and it provides them with what can be best described as their own virtual teacher complete with STOP and START buttons.

As the awareness of the effectiveness of Visual Learning has grown, and the significant benefits of online educational video have become more widely accepted and understood, the availability and the amount of online educational video has started to increase. However with the exception of one company, the needs of the hearing impaired child or student appear to have been largely ignored and forgotten.

While this may not have been deliberate, the fact remains that this has largely come about because the majority of so-called educational video available online, is film footage that was original recorded for other uses including general TV distribution, and was not developed specifically for the teaching of the K12 curriculum. In other words, simply because those videos may be of a general educational nature, does not mean that they adequately meet the requirements of the curriculum standards.

Zane Education however has taken a totally different approach, and as a result has a developed an online educational video library of over 1,500 online videos covering 11 school subjects and 240 topics specifically for the teaching of the curriculum. And wonderfully they have had the foresight to provide children with as many learning style options as possible, by adding subtitles to all of their videos.

In other words children with hearing impairments can now also enjoy the significant benefits of online educational video.

As was pointed out in an earlier article on Visual Learning that specifically addressed the issue of Dyslexia, there are those that would speculate that learning by using video rather than the use of textbooks, means that children’s reading skills will suffer. Obviously with the addition of subtitles that is not necessarily the case. In fact a future article to be released in the next week will demonstrate and explain precisely, how video subtitles can be used to rapidly increase a child’s reading skills. And Research carried out by the Availll Institute over the last 5 years has demonstrated the link between the use of subtitles on video, and the improvement in children’s reading skills. (more…)


27th
Jan 2011

Visual Learning and Your Child

The Benefits of Subtitled Educational Video for the Average Child

We start this third article in the series about Visual Learning and the Use of Subtitled Educational Video to benefit Children of All Abilities, with an apology.

We apologize using the term “Average Child” in the subtitle above because we do not believe there is any such thing as the “Average Child”. Every single child is entirely different and a unique person in their own right, and has their own set of likes, dislikes, and above all learning preferences……and that is exactly what makes the use of subtitled educational video and Visual Learning such a beneficial learning solution for the child that does not have any significant disabilities.

Generally, Visual Learning is about using graphics to deliver information or data, in this case curriculum based learning material, combined with various techniques that enables the delivery of that information to be more effective in various cases like special needs etc. However for the child that does not have learning difficulties or impediments, it is the nature of subtitled video itself that delivers the significant learning benefits. And note the emphasis is on the world subtitled, as opposed to video without the subtitles.

Essentially educational video sets each child free from the abilities of their peers and provides the environment that enables each child to study at their own speed thereby enables them to achieve their greatest potential. Unlike in the classroom environment the child has the control the delivery of the information. If they don’t understand something, they are able to press the STOP or START buttons as many times as is necessary until they fully understand the material. In essence there is no more missing out because the teacher has covered the subject too quickly. The other situation that many children often encounter is the onset of boredom when the teacher has to proceed at a slower speed for other students that have not been able to process the information as quickly as their peers. But with video, it is the child that has the control and they are able to decide themselves when they need to go back over parts of a particular topic again.

The use of video as a learning medium makes the education and learning experience compelling, considerably more interesting, and it introduces the element of fun. Introducing the element of fun to the learning process makes it an enjoyable experience and suddenly we notice from that the child starts to become a lot more self-motivated towards repeating the education experience. The motivated child starts to understand the reason for learning, and that motivation often then starts to cultivate the desire to know more, particularly in those areas that interest them, and for which they have an affinity and natural abilities.
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