Over the weekend I watched John Green’s new Crash Course video about the causes of WWI. While I watched the video I thought about whether or not I would use it in a high school history classroom. In the video Green covers a lot of somewhat advanced content quickly.
Ultimately, I decided that I would use a video like Who Started World War I? with students who already have a solid understanding of the basics. Then I would ask them to create their own short videos to expand upon a point made by Green. It is also possible that I would have students who want to make a counterpoint to something in the Crash Course videos, that would be acceptable video project too.
Like a lot of student video projects, I’m not looking so much for production value as I am for content value. In other words, I’m evaluating the students use of facts in supporting the main point of their videos. There are a lot of tools that students could use to create their videos for this project. They could simply use the webcams in their laptops to record themselves then edit the content in WeVideo. They could also use a tool like Knowmia or 30 Hands to create their videos on their iPads.
To be clear, I’m not picking on John Green’s Crash Course series. The same type of activity that I described could be undertaken with any number of topics discussed in YouTube videos.