I use short, funny video clips a lot when I’m teaching ELLs, and you can read in detail about how I use them in The Best Popular Movies/TV Shows For ESL/EFL (& How To Use Them). In short, there are many ways to use them that promote speaking, listening, writing and reading (including having students describe – in writing and verbally – a chronological description of what they saw).
I’ve posted a few of them during the first half of this year, and I thought it would be useful to readers — and to me — if I brought them together in one post.
Video clips of sneaky critters are great ones to show to English Language Learners to get them to describe — verbally and in writing — what they see. I also use them to in my IB Theory of Knowledge class for a discussion about if animals have ethics:
Astronaut Scott Kelly at the International Space Station filmed himself in a gorilla suit chasing Tim Peake:
The humor exhibited in this Darth Santa spoof would be a big hit for many teenage boys who are English Language Learners, and I suspect others would enjoy it, too (note that there are a few seconds showing him drinking). Students can watch it and describe verbally and writing what they saw:
Mai Xi Lee has done a tremendous job working with schools in our district to implement Social Emotional Learning. In this video, you’ll hear what it looks like (and, you’ll see a few clips of me and my classroom ):
Police Body Cameras: What Do You See? is a new very impressive interactive at The New York Times. After first soliciting the reader’s general feelings about the police, the interactive shows several staged police encounters from different cameras and angles – asking you to judge what you think you saw. Then, those judgments are compared to other what others said and their feelings about the police. It’s extraordinarily useful to just about any class, and will be a superior addition to my Theory of Knowledge lesson on perception, Videos: Here’s The Simple Theory of Knowledge Lesson On Perception I Did Today. That post shares several other videos showing the same event from different angles.
Filmmaker and artist Yann Arthus-Bertrand spent 3 years collecting real-life stories from more than 2,000 women and men in 60 countries. Working with a dedicated team of translators, journalists and cameramen, he captures deeply personal and emotional accounts of topics that unite us all; struggles with poverty, war, homophobia, and the future of our planet mixed with moments of love and happiness.
I’m always trying to learn new classroom discussion strategies, particularly using the sequence of big-to-small-to-big (pose question,assignment and sequence to the entire class; have them break into small groups; then come back to the entire class to share and discuss). This kind of strategy works great for English Language Learners and, I think, for just about everybody else, too. So I was excited to see this short video on The Teaching Channel (embedded below and here’s the direct link to it at The Channel).
I hadn’t heard of the “Wingman” strategy before (call me “PC,” but I’d probably call it “Wingperson.” Basically, students go into small groups (for example, a group of three) and one person is designated as the “Wingman.” That person’s job is to listen to the discussion between the classmates in the group and use a sheet to evaluate the quality of the work (for example, if they are using certain sentence starters or if they are talking excessively) and then to write down their own thoughts and summarize what occurred. Then, that student can provide a report to the class. There are lots of variations, of course. If you register at the Teaching Channel (it’s free and easy), you then gain access to some nice materials, including a sample Wingman worksheet.
Brainwaves has issued another great video — this time a short interview of Jonathan Kozol. Actually, there are two. The first is five minutes, and the second is one minute of him talking about the great Fred Rogers. As a bonus, I’ve also included an NPR video of him from last year. Here’s an excerpt from the new video, followed by all the videos themselves: