Using descriptive videos in teaching and learning English
Meral, Ozge, Gizem and I created this video to teach comparatives and superlatives for new English learners. This was part fulfillment for the group project in CTE319.
- As a group, we thought that the students may be confused about these two topics, even though they have seen the grammar and done lots of exercises in the course books.
- So, we thought that they might better consolidate what they know by watching this video.
We go the idea of creating a descriptive video from Mr Fogle, a teacher in America, who shared the process he used with his elementary school students. We found that that this approach can be meaningful for groups of students of any age.
We followed Mr. Fogle's steps easily. It took us some time to come up with the scenario, but while shooting the video, we tried to do our best, so it took 3 hours in total.
While creating our video according to Mr Fogle's steps, we had a second camera to show the 'behind the scenes' of us creating the video. You can see here how we arranged the camera, read the script and animated the pictures and graphics. If you watch this, you will know exactly how we shot the video.
We took pictures while we were making the video, and produced this Stupeflix video to document the process.
So what? How can descriptive videos improve learning?
This video can be used to motivate and warm up the students to the lesson before introducing comparatives and superlatives.
- If they know a little about the play, "Waiting for Godot", the video would be more meaningful. In using this with students, we might get them to read about the play first, in their L1 (For Turkish, start them off here: http://tr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godot%27yu_Beklerken).
- You can apply the standard techniques in using a video, such as playing it without sound at first to elicit the language, get them to retell the video after watching it, etc.
- For a weak class, you might like to review some of the adjectives used in the video, so they can concentrate on the form.
In fact, shooting the video made us as ELT teachers-in-training remember and review our own knowledge about the topic of comparatives and superlatives.
- So, rather than teachers creating these videos, perhaps students could be asked to create their own descriptive videos based on their own understanding of the language they are learning.
- While preparing the video, I learned that there should be at least three members in the group because a lot of interesting ideas came up from the members and this made the entire process from brainstorming to publishing the video enjoyable.
- Also, it is impossible to create the video with the active participation of at least four people. This is a good exercise in cooperative and collaborative learning.