Module 5: Screencasting

Student Assignment:

Ideally, keeping a podcast short and sweet will produce the best results. Hey, I can’t throw stones at my students who have short attention spans and want to multitask, can you? My sample lesson had some extenuating circumstances and the students enjoyed the assignment so I got away with a long one.. this time!

I recently began attempting to teach via Station Rotations as a way to differentiate for my students.

  • Day 1: disaster.
  • Day 2: Woah, tons of prep.. is this REALLY worth it?
  • Day 3: OMG! It’s working! 100% actively engaged students, and I was able to conference 1:1 with many students to preteach, reteach, or discuss personal goals.

We’ve had a bout with a nasty flu bug, and when I began these picture notes, 1/3 of my class was absent! We’ve been taking Cornell Notes as a way to comprehend non-fiction/expository text; however, this was my second lesson on taking picture notes for students like myself who are visual learners.

This ScreenCastify lesson was a brilliant way for absent students to make up what they had missed, to complete notes they hadn’t finished, and to review notes for an upcoming quiz. They loved it. My second language learners paused and rewound more often, focusing on the vocabulary. My accelerated students drew their own notes as I ‘lectured’. I had a student who left early for Spring Break to visit family in Mexico, and when he comes back and has internet access, he will be able to find the assignment and catch up. Student all the effort. Me? Zero effort. NICE!


I’m excited about using Screencasting as a way to work with my colleagues on lesson planning for next year. We’ve taken on the goal of creating a beginning of the year unit which combines basic language arts skill lessons, classroom procedures, and the basics of all the technology they will be expected to use during their transition year from elementary to middle school. We are excited that all the front-loading of planning such a unit will save us from countless teach/reteach situations not on content; rather, students learning HOW to use the tools available to them. For the skill lessons, we can divide and conquer, each of us doing a screencast to share with the grade level. For the classroom procedures, we will record individually to match the community of our own classes. I’m really excited about this new tool to use, and eventually teach my students!

Picture Notes – Ancient Greece, The Rise of Democracy

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