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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.

Oct 2010

The Role of Educational Video in Homeschooling

A Thorn in the Side…or a Jewel in the Crown

I received an email a couple of days ago from a friend. She asked me to comment on the following statement “…..you know, in the US, there is quite a bit of controversy over K-12 among homeschoolers …..many see it as taking away the parents teaching of the children and relegating it to videos”.

In this article I want to address the issue and role of using online educational video in homeschooling.

I find it a little hard to believe that if we sit down and think about it for a moment that anyone could reasonably suggest that “using video is taking away the parents teaching of their children” any more using a textbook might.

Using video to teach your child as a homeschooler is certainly no different to using a textbook in that it is simply a format in which to deliver the core information, or the facts!

However video is a format that has distinctive silver lining.

Firstly the textbook only offers the child one solitary option. It must be read. And if you then have a child that does not like reading, and on top of that they do not find the topic particularly interesting, then it can be a recipe for disaster.

Video however provides the child with 2 choices. And if you use subtitled video, as we do, then it provides the child with 3 choices. They can watch, listen or read. Every child absorbs and processes information in the manner that best suits them, and their abilities. So it is important to provide the child with the choices so that when we hope or expect them to absorb and process certain information, we give them the benefit of a flying start.

At the same time though video offers a much more dynamic means to deliver information, and as a result it rapidly captures the child’s attention and maintains their interest for a longer period of time. And guess what? It also introduces an element of fun at the same time. You make learning fun and watch the child’s motivation increase. That’s precisely why the most effective form of learning comes about when the child enjoys and is interested in the topic. I suspect this is exactly why few of us adults retire to bed early in the evening with a dictionary to relax! Hard work or what? (more…)

Sep 2010

Maintaining Childrens Attention and Improving Their Reading

I‘ve been reading a lot of questions on several Blogs and Facebook pages recently about maintaining children’s interest and attention while they are doing their schoolwork, whether it be at home, or in the classroom.

At the same time I have been seeing comments about problems parents and teachers are having with children’s lack of interest in reading. So as a parent of 2 children, I’d like to share something with you that has really helped us with our 2 children, in both areas – and at the same time.

We’ve found that using online video attracts the attention of the child and maintains their interest for longer periods of time, – in fact more than any textbooks we’ve ever used. It makes learning fun and they are more motivated to learn. (more…)

Aug 2010

Only One Front Page ……and 12 different education stories.

I have to apologize for a quiet time on the blog for the last 10 days but we have a dilemma to overcome.

Since we launched this website, an increasing number of people have contacted us and explained just how many different types of students can benefit through using our online educational videos.

Zane Education (Zane Publishing Inc. in it’s former life) has had a well-established name in the school and home education markets since the mid 1990’s. And when we decided to convert our 250 educational CD-ROM’s into online video we always expected that it was the teachers, students and homeschooling families that would be our main customers.

However now that we are using the online video format – and most importantly that all of our videos are subtitled – we are seeing that many other types of students are benefiting from what we have produced. Those children include special needs students, gifted students, the disabled, children with dyslexia and reading difficulties, students with visual impairments, ESL students and especially children whose parents and teachers want to help develop their reading skills.