Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

April 23, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

This Is The Easiest Way I’ve Found To Upload Multiple TOK (Or Any Student) Presentation Videos


I’ve heard that that it may no longer required to videotape International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge Oral Presentations any longer, but I don’t know that for a fact (if you know for sure one way or another, please leave a comment).

Either way, though, I will continue to be doing so — students clearly take it a little more seriously when they are being videotaped, and the best ones (with permission) are always good for me to post on our class blog for future models. I know that many other TOK teachers around the world show them, too.

On challenge with using an iPhone 6 (or any iPhone) to videotape student group presentations that may be between thirteen and twenty minutes long, however, is that they are too long to upload to YouTube the usual way – you’ll be prompted to shorten it.

There are probably lots of alternatives to the process I use, but it’s simple and easy and I thought some teachers might find it useful — whether you teach TOK or just do other student projects that are longer videotapes.

The YouTube Capture app works great. I just click on the app, click on video to access my Camera, type in the title, tap on it, and it starts uploading. I’ll do the same for multiple other videos to get in the queue and several hours later (it does take quite awhile for it to upload so I usually do it overnight). They are all uploaded to my YouTube Channel (as private, unless I have received permission to make it public).

The only other thing I have to do is set the “lock” setting to “Never.” iPhones go to sleep automatically after one minute if you don’t go to Settings/General/Auto Lock and change the time. The Capture app automatically pauses when the screen locks, so changing that setting when you’re uploading a video is a critical step.

Speaking of videotaping student presentations, I’ve also found that the Ampridge MightyMic S iPhone Shotgun Video Microphone is worth the price to pick up good audio from students who are speaking.

How do you upload multiple lengthy student presentation videos for TOK or for other projects?

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April 16, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

All Of My Theory Of Knowledge “Best” Lists In One Place!


As regular readers know, I teach a very wide variety of classes, and they include the International Baccalaureate Theory Of Knowledge course.

I know that quite a few TOK teachers read this blog, and thought it would be helpful to them if I put all of TOK-related “Best” lists together in one place.

These don’t include some excellent resources I have recently posted (though, those will be included in my next mid-year “Best” list, which will be added to this collection). You can also check out the TOK category on my site for those latest posts.

In addition to these “Best” lists, you probably want to check out my Nearly 2,000 Categorized Resources For IB Theory Of Knowledge Classes.

Now, here goes:

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources — 2010

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2011 — So Far

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2011

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2012 — So Far

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2012 — Part Two

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2013 – So Far

The Best Commentaries On The New IB Theory Of Knowledge Teaching Guide

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2013 – Part Two

The Best Movies For IB Theory Of Knowledge Classes – What Are Your Suggestions?

The Best Posts On IB Theory Of Knowledge Oral Presentations

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2014 – So Far

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2014 – Part Two

The Best Posts On Teaching TOK “Knowledge Questions”

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April 10, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

Video: Wow, It Looks Like Pixar’s ‘Inside Out’ Movie Will Be Perfect For IB TOK Classes!

As International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge teachers know, emotion and imagination are two “Ways Of Knowing” (for people unfamiliar with TOK, the curriculum defines a number of qualities as ways we acquire knowledge, and then divides that knowledge into “Areas Of Knowing” like history, math, etc.).

Reader Vladi Stanojevic shared with me this video trailer for an upcoming Pixar movie titled “Inside Out.” Not only does it look great for anyone, it looks like it will also be perfect for TOK classes.

I’m adding this post to The Best Movies For IB Theory Of Knowledge Classes – What Are Your Suggestions?

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April 7, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

Here’s The Evaluation Form I Created For TOK Oral Presentations

All International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge teachers know that IB has made a number of changes related to the course, essay and oral presentation this year.

One of the changes for the oral presentations is using a much less complicated rubric for the oral presentations. I think that makes things easier for us teachers, though I’m not convinced that having less written guidance makes it easier for students.

In addition to the involved planning outline I’ve created that student use to develop their presentation, I’ve also just come-up with a simple form that I’ve given to students to serve as a final check-list and as an anonymous sheet they’ll complete while they watch each presentation. Then, at the end, each group will receive them, as well as my evaluation using the official rubric. Presenters will first complete it for themselves as a self-evaluation that they will give to me to consider as I complete my official form.  I’m telling presenters that if they disagree with my grade, they can also use the feedback they receive from other students as evidence to support their argument.

You can download it here.

Look it over and let me know if you have ideas on how I can make it better.

I’ve also reproduced it below:

TOK Oral Presentation Checklist


NAME OF GROUP ___________________________________


Rank each element of the presentation from 1-10, with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest.


  • Were presenters dressed professionally?


  • Main knowledge question was well-formulated?


  • Real-life situation well-connected to main knowledge question?


  • Was it clear how secondary knowledge questions/linking questions connected to help answer main knowledge question?


  • Secondary knowledge/Linking questions share more than one perspective each?


  • Did a story/example follow every point made in the presentation? Did non-personal stories outnumber personal ones?


  • Did slides help amplify points being made, and not just repeat them?


  • Were multiple connections to the TOK book/TOK class made?


  • Were good connections made to real-life situation by each secondary knowledge/linking question?


  • How well did people speak – did they read off their notecards all the time and look at the PowerPoint slides, or did they look at the audience and demonstrate that they had practiced a number of times?


  • Was the conclusion well-thought-out, or was it more like a “throw-away” section? Also, how did they do on the time requirements?


  • Write two positive and specific comments about this presentation:


  • What is the final grade you would give this presentation?


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March 28, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

Quote Of The Day: Now This Something Our Students Need To Know & We Need To Remember

Science Daily has just reported on research that provides more evidence of why we might be resistant to new ideas (sort of, but I don’t think exactly, like confirmation bias).

Here’s an excerpt from the article titled Why good solutions make us oblivious to better ones:


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March 18, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

Brand-New TED Talk Is Perfect For TOK Classes: “Can we create new senses for humans?”

TED Talks just uploaded a fascinating one — Can we create new senses for humans? with David Eagleman.

Here’s how they describe it:

As humans, we can perceive less than a ten-trillionth of all light waves. “Our experience of reality,” says neuroscientist David Eagleman, “is constrained by our biology.” He wants to change that. His research into our brain processes has led him to create new interfaces to take in previously unseen information about the world around us.

You can read the transcript here.

It’s perfect for International Baccalaureate classes studying Perception.

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March 17, 2015
by Larry Ferlazzo

Yes! TED-Ed Produces A Video On Plato’s Allegory Of The Cave

Learning about Plato’s Allegory of the Cave is a key lesson in most IB Theory of Knowledge courses, and I’ve also been able to integrate it into my English Language Learner classes, too.

You can see many of the resources I use in the classroom, including student-made videos of modern parable versions, at our class blog.

Today, TED-Ed released a lesson and accompanying video that will be a nice addition.

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