Unit 4 - Topic A

What are some of the pros of using YouTube in your classroom? What are some of the cons? How could you handle or mitigate the cons?


Cori said...

I think that You Tube would be very beneficial in the classroom. The benefits of using You Tube would be that it has so many resources available at just the click of a button. The students also get to hear a different voice and usually kids get excited anytime you introduce anything that has to do with technology. The cons to using YouTube would be that the students could stumble upon inappropriate things. I definetely think that the positives of You Tube outway the negatives. I have never messed around with You Tube and did not realize all of the things that it had to offer. I will be using this for resources a lot now that I know more about it.

Diana said...

I love using YouTube. It is a great visual resource and it takes very little time to find an appropriate video.

Ads can be a problem and our connection at school can be a problem. If I make sure I have it set up before I need it and get it up full screen I don't have worry about that.

Also I personally can loose hours searching on YouTube and end up off on an unrelated tangent. If I show some personally discipline I can use YouTube without losing a morning being entertained.

Sue said...

YouTube is so much fun to use! You can find a clip about almost anything on it - guess this is good and bad! I love searching for video clips that enrich the concepts that I teach. The down side of this is the huge amount of time that I often use searching for these clips. Like Diana, I must discipline myself!

Students often want me to view something they have found on YouTube. My policy is that they can leave me the name of the video or the url and I will view it on my own time. If I think it is appropriate and beneficial for the class to see, then I integrate it into a lesson.

I think previewing and planning ahead are keys to eliminating some of the negatives that can be associated with YouTube.

Susan said...

Some of the best teachers in our school system use YouTube to bring their lessons alive for students. I think the neat thing about YouTube is that the selections tend to be fairly short. How much time used to be wasted threading the film through the projector to watch a movie that was only partially relevant to a topic being covered? Now when Mr. G is teaching about Martin Luther King, the students hear and see him in action. When Mr. B gives an especially engaging lecture, he records it and uploads it to YouTube so his students can review it later.
Sue and Diana have good points about using discipline during the search for good material and getting things set up in advance to save class time.

Hugh Johnson said...

A brief video to begin a class could be an alternative to the traditional joke or anecdote as an icebreaker.

Laura S said...

I'm amazed by the vast amount of information that can be found on You Tube! Searching and finding just what you're looking for is the biggest obstacle! I love the fact that I can show things to my children that they normally wouldn't see. My one daughter was interested in tornados so we spent tons of time viewing actual tornados! It's a great way to enrich discussions and add extra to lessons. One of the biggest cons that I've come across is the language. For example, a lot of vulgar language was used when videotaping a tornado! :) I usually ended up leaving the volume off and just added my own commentary. All videos would definitely have to be previewed to prevent getting unwanted language or content.

Shannon said...

I mentioned this on my own blog, but youtube has so much to offer. You can find videos on almost anything, and the students really enjoy watching them. It helps the teachers reinforce the material they have covered in a way the students really relate to.
While it's a positive thing that there is such a wide variety of topics, that can also be a negative. We have to be very careful what the students are watching because of the language, and improper images on youtube.
The teachers definitely need to plan ahead. They need view the video before showing it to their students. Since we have the mimio boards at my school I thought the teachers could watch the videos in their classroom rather than having the students search for the video.

Bob said...

The good thing about YouTube in the class room it that it’s a great attention grabber, especially for people who have a short attentions span like myself. The bad thing is that YouTube is full a distractions, and of course material that is not suited for school. So in that regard YouTube can be bad for especially for people who are easily distracted like me.

Carlos said...

Much like a podcast, the video can be about any topic, and can complement subjects taught in a regular classroom setting. For instance, during a "Show and Tell" session, a student might describe what he did during his summer vacation, how he learned how to fly radio-controlled airplanes. Perhaps throughout the summer his dad might have video-taped his achievements, from early trial-and-error through long, flawless flights out in an open pasture. The video would show how easy it is to control the radio transmitter, to showing his model airplanes doing loops and banks and always coming in to perfect landings.

This could generate discussion amongst his classmates after the presentation: how to go about learning to fly radio control airplanes, where does one go to buy, assemble and ultimately fly: is it expensive, what experience is needed, and so forth. The positive early experience might even influence youngsters to pursue an interest in aviation, perhaps leading to engineering or aeronautical/aerospace pursuits.

Obviously the cons of Youtube are that there are so many subjects out there about everything and anything; from the insane to outright harmful and ridiculous. Trying to filter, or screen them all would be impossible.

Worth Weller said...

nice job everyone - I love all the ideas, and have just this semester, thanks to this tip, used YouTube for a icebreaker.

Shelly said...

We teachers are competing in a world of fast past, 5 minute clips and video games for our students attention. What a better way to teach the students in their own environment than using YouTube technology as a stimulant to engage students in a topic. It's easily accesible to most children, they probably already know how to use it (if not, easy to learn), and you can find appropriate videos with little effort.

The cons would include bad language and of course, minutes (or hours) lost due to my inability to stay on topic. I find myself wandering off topic easily when searching for appropriate videos for a certain topic.

Logan said...

You can really use YOUTUBE for tons of stuff in the classroom. I used it a lot with my wiki lesson for our class project. I found great commericals, and music videos showing how the media uses sexual propaganda. It came in very handy for me.

Jenny said...

I never realized how many videos are on You Tube. I never thought to use it as a resource in my classroom. I think the videos are a great way to add interest to a lecture or lesson. I think I would use it the most as an introduction to a lesson. Instead of having students watch a long documentary about something you can probably find a short clip on You Tube. The songs with videos will be very helpful to me.

My biggest concerns about You Tube are the advertisements and some of the content. I don't want to expose my students to inappropriate subject matter. I do not know if there is a way to filter this or not. I could send the video as an attachment in an email, and I believe it just sends the video.

Bill said...


YouTube has almost every conceivable topic available to students and teachers. Simply type in a topic and there it is in seconds. Many of these videos are highly educational or just fun for students to watch. I teach science and sometimes it’s cool just to show videos that just show the students that certain areas of science can be fun too.

The problem with YouTube is obviously that there are also many things that you don’t want your students to see. There is some monitoring of YouTube but not enough to just let students in a classroom setting wander through various topics without any guidance at all. They must have supervision and in a class of 30 students that can be a little tricky at times.

They best way to mitigate the cons is planning. The teacher must visit possible sites ahead of time and then help direct students to appropriate places. Just letting students visit anywhere they want is never a good idea.

Mango said...

YouTube is certainly filled with lots of viewing options for educational enrichment as well as entertainment. My own experience to date has left me with the sense that I might prefer to use this medium as a publishing tool more than as a research tool. Too often things are posted without proper citation or permission. Much of what I've seen has been poor quality, base humor, and inappropriate language, none of which merit class time. I feel comfortable using clips to pique student interest, but I would want to maintain control over navigating this site so that I did not have a lab full of students trolling "YouTube Poop." Where I would want to give students more reign would be in the area of publication. The possibility of extending their voices to a larger audience raises the attention to their content and editing. So I think I could mitigate the con of surfing inappropriate material by focusing narrowly on using YouTube to upload final projects.

I am attracted to the concept of TeacherTube with its filters and shared intent of classroom usage. I haven't spent enough time on this to make an evaluation of its substance yet. Do any of you have enough experience with this site to comment on its quality?

D.Chris Singleton said...

I think I agree with Mango's idea of using it more as a publishing tool rather than for research. There are some very cool videos however that could definetly be used in the classroom. I found the famous speeches in history the most interesting and beneficial. Instead of just talking about J.F.K, Reagan, or Churchhill you could pull up speeches of them so students could actually hear them.

The cons are the fact that there is so much inappropriate content. Even if the teacher is monitoring it would be easy to pull up things with bad language. The videos shown would have to be videos previewed by the teacher instead of videos the students find. Also, even when the video is appropriate the related video titles showing below have inappropriate titles....definetly lots of potential though.

Andrea said...

The pros of using YouTube in the classroom are that the students can see things that you just can do in the class. For example, as a poetry unit, I can read poems from a certain poet, and that's fine. But I can look up that same poem on YouTube and get someone acting out the same poem. I thin the students would enjoy the poem much better if they saw it rather than heard it.

Another pro would be that it can make your lesson much more "entertaining" to the students. With most of the students wanting that instant gratification, YouTube can deliver that in certain aspects that the teacher may not be able to do personally.

The biggest con I found is the inappropriate material even on "student friendly" searches. The content of the video may be OK, but some of the comments that people post are just rife with bad langauge. That could definitiely be a problem.

physical fit for life said...

What are some of the pros of using YouTube in your classroom?

Teaching, and learning outcomes can be broadcast over the Internet to increase student engagement and achievement. People love looking at themselves in pictures and on film. Students will go home and watch these educational videos of themselves, their teachers, and friends over and over, therefore reinforcing educational material in a way that engages them. It gives Parents a window into their child's world--they get to see what their kids work on at school, and their kids are proud to show it to them.

What are some of the cons?
Lack of security
Ample inappropriate content
Online Content is out there forever and students can't take it back

How could you handle or mitigate the cons?
Utilize software such as FIZZ
Intros Private 'YouTube' for Classes.

Vanessa said...

In my opinion, the number one pro of YouTube is that it is soooooooooooooo engaging! Our students love short video clips and different ways of presenting information, so they just "eat up" this method of instruction. Some other pros are:
1) It is easy to find videos (availability of videos is amazing) and easy to play them in your classroom.
2) Students can access these videos at home or from any other computer.
3) The content of most of the science videos is relevant and accurate.
1) When looking for a specific video, students may come across inappropriate material.
2) Although most on of the information that I found on science topics was accurate, SOME of it was not. Therefore, students may watch a video with incorrect science information.
3) Students can become dependent or reliant on videos for learning information. They also need the skills to be able to learn in a lecture format as well.
One way to deal with the first two cons is to show the specific video in class and not have students looking for it on their own. The third con is one that I struggle with as a teacher. I think it is important to make learning fun and use a variety of techniques. However, sitting still and actually LISTENING during a speech or lecture are very important skills that every student needs to learn as well. In an world that values entertainment, students have to learn that they will not always be entertained. I'm not sure how to teach that--other than using a variety of teaching techniques. : )

Andrew said...

I agree with a lot of the comments. YouTube can be a great hook to start a class period. It can be a break from lecture or notes to highlight a specific topic or event. It can also be a place for student projects and presentation.

The cons, like many stated, is that there is a lot of inappropriate material on YouTube. It can also be a huge distraction, if all students want to do is WATCH videos and not actually research. Without proper directions, a lot of students can waste time on YouTube.

However, the pros definitely outweigh the cons. Anytime you can bring in visuals, music, and videos to a history class, its a good thing!

Abby said...

The pros to using YouTube in the classroom is that it can be used as an attention grabber or 'hook' to get the students interested in a topic you are going to teach. Students are much more likely to watch a video than just listen to you talk some more. And it is something different. Also, the students can find their own YouTubes while researching a topic to present a project to the class. Also, you could have them create their own little class You Tubes (I don't think that I would actually want to have them post them on the internet though, do to safety issues-- a con).

Some of the cons are that the students and teachers who are looking for a specific YouTube topic can spend lots of time and not find what they want. Also, there is the chance of coming across inappropriate things. And as already mentioned above, if we would create our own, we wouldn't want to post them due to safety concerns.

I think that as long as you keep the children focused, and give them required time limits and specific goals, they can find a YouTube that will work for them and not have too much trouble. When searching in google, if they go to advanced search, it will give them the opportunity to make it safer by not allowing inappropriate items.

lifetime learner said...

I definitely agree that you have to be extremely careful about what you let your students look at on YouTube. I think it's better to find videos ahead of time and let them only look at those videos. You must control what comes into your classroom. However, I think that YouTube is great for finding historical videos that really can enhance what students can learn in the classroom. I think it's important to use common sense and not allow students free reign in YouTube. Personally, I think that you keep students in full view at all times,when using YouTube, and be prepared to shut it down, if necessary.

SeƱora Riley said...

I just started using YouTube in my class last semester and it has worked really well for me. Although I have been teaching for 4 years now, I have not accumulated a lot of Hispanic music for my Spanish class. I don't really get a budget for the program either, so I had resorted to YouTube and had found much success. The nice thing about it is that it is at my fingertips, and I can use an LCD projector to show the students too. I have used it to find songs to help students remember the language better, oral CLOZE listening activities, and dancing. I have also used it for French lessons because it was something that I was supposed to teach to my 6th graders, yet I have never taken French and was only sent textbook material, but never any audio material.

Some cons-not everything is acceptable. The most innocent thing could be turned into something vulgar. As with most internet sites, when you are searching something, you can't be too sure about what is going to come up. You have to use caution. As a teacher, you have to make sure that you view everything prior to viewing it. The only time that I have "let" students use it was during "fiestas" or during lunch. I always monitored what they were doing. They would show me you tube videos that were student created of them dancing or ask me what my thoughts were on certain music. It gave me something to build that relationship with them. They knew my standards and would respect that if anything was inappropriate, even cursing that I would have them turn it off or to something else.

Josh said...

When looking at the pros and cons of you tube they are probably even. The pros are that it expands the students ability to get a different persons perspective. Sometimes students may not understand something that you are saying, but someone else s perspective may grab them. Also you tube allows them the student to take a deeper approach to visual references. The cons are simple. If students want to abuse the system they can. Many students may cross deviate from the material and focus there attention on subjects of non interest. Likewise some students may become more over whelmed by additional content outside of the class.

Angela said...

I think YouTube in the classroom is a great way to give your students another view of whatever it is you are trying to teach. Sometimes just having someone explain the concepts in a slightly different way is what reaches some students. Also, it is good because it is something different and new so it might be a good way to get the students' attention, especially if you don't use it all the time. It is almost like a novelty thing, just like watching movies in the classroom was to my generation-great way for kids to learn something while they think they are just getting a few minutes of "easy" time watching the clip. I also think YouTube is a great way for the teacher to learn new styles for teaching. Actually seeing someone else try something helps you to feel more confident in yourself when you decide to try it.

On the flip side, there are a lot of very questionable things on YouTube. For example, when I was searching for some math videos for middle school math, I searched for "math for teens" and came up with a couple of innapropriate options. Definitely would not want to search this in front of students. As a teacher you would preview it anyway, but this is not something that you could say to your students on a whim "hey, let's see what we can find on YouTube about this..." You would have to know the exact video you want to share and be very careful in any searching you decide to do with students. In my case, at a Catholic School, I would not search with the students or let my students search at all. I would make sure I had done that all before showing anything to the students.

Anonymous said...

Some pros of using Youtube are that it gets students involved and interested. Some proffessors use short video clips that have something to do with their lecture. I think it helps keep things interesting and not make you want to fall asleep. The biggest con is the viewing of inappropriate videos. You have to be very careful what you type in because you never know what is going to pop up on the screen. I would simply just not let my students search while at school. Another option is to give the exact link or show during class.

Kevin said...

I'll simply echo the thoughts of almost every post here: YouTube has a great deal of good material, a great deal of bad material, and caution and common sense must prevail (when should it not?).

I've used YouTube with my college students in recommending certain videos that relate to class material. In those instances, I've given direct links.

I would never send minors to YouTube with instructions to "search for..." In addition to not knowing what will result from a particular search, the suggested search terms that fill in your search box automatically can also be questionable.

Another negative issue with generic searches with YouTube deals with quality. This is what I mean: As a music teacher, I've looked for good music examples of certain pieces of repertoire. Your search results can range from professional performers modeling a good musical example to quite the opposite.

Joyelle said...

I think it can be a good tool to use in class to help show examples or help to reiterate the topic. The bad thing about youtube is that you can find somethings that children should not see. Some of things on youtube I don't even want to see. I think if you closely monitor it there shouldn't be any problems.

Travis Fisher said...

I agree with almost everyone on the major pros and cons: very engaging and sometimes inappropriate. I'd also agree with Mango that YouTube is probably more useful as a publication tool than as a research tool. One con that I nobody has addressed yet is copyright infringement. Creators who are publishing content on YouTube are already giving permission for public viewing on that medium, but clips from tv shows or movies might violate copyright laws. Links in an educational blog might be viewed as fair use, but from what I've read, it's a dodgy legal matter nonetheless.

Shane Miles said...

I’ve used numerous YouTube videos during presentations. The amount of diverse, topic-relevant material on YouTube is amazing and greatly improves the level of attention and consideration students give to the subject presented. Appropriately chosen videos can demonstrate key-concepts in engaging ways and serve as a foundation for interesting deliberative debates. Since most kids enjoy auditory and visual communication, YouTube videos can be a good way of playing upon students’ innate interests. YouTube videos are also great because of ease-of-play and at-your-finger-tips access.

If I am the one selecting and playing the videos in the classroom, I’m not worried about inappropriate material. For more than one reason, it is obviously a good idea to gather and view videos before presenting them.

Lindsey said...

I think that I could find very practical uses of YouTube videos in math. Often times I find that students who are struggling to understand what I'm teaching will pick it up quickly from another teacher who might explain the same thing in a slightly different way. I think YouTube videos might be a good way for me to end class. I can show a short 3 to 5 minute clip on the topic I just taught and the students can record 2 or 3 things that they observed in the video. These could be collected at the end of the week or even month for a few extra points.
It might also be a good way to give parents and students additional information about how do a certain skill. As students get into high school I have a lot of parents tell me that they just can't do that kind of math anymore. I think some of them would be willing to watch a short clip with their student and together figure out the problems. At the very least it is an additional resource.
I understand their are cons, namely of the inappropriate material that you could find on YouTube, but in the scheme of things it seems like most students are savvy enough with the computer they can find inappropriate things if they want to. I agree with what several have said, just give them the direct link and don't have them search blindly. On the other hand, I can see myself giving bonus points to anyone who searches and finds a good YouTube video. I think it is just as important to teach our kids how to search for appropriate things as shelter them from the "bad" stuff, be it inappropriate or just bad quality. They need to know how to sort the good from the bad just like we do.

andyheller said...

Monitoring each student and the appropeiate usage would be an issue. There would have to be penalties for going to inappropriate video sites, and teachers would have to be really consitent about "policing" each user.
YouTube is an awesome tool when it is used properly! You can find almost anything you may need on this site, and most of it is really educational!

andyheller said...

I could project videos on the wall that pertained to exercise, and walk around the gym to monitor each student and make sure they are doing the movements correctly. There are numerous stretching exercises on youtube, along with demonstrations for different activities! Tennis is an example of a sport where I could use some help in teaching it, as I have never played it very well! They would also come in handy for substitutes!

Christine Russell said...

There are so many ways to use You Tube in the classroom. Perhaps the most beneficial is the real life exposure you are able to give your students. The famous speeches of great leaders of the past are no longer just words on a page. You Tube allows your students to see those speeches as if they were there. Of course monitoring each student's use of You Tube is the greatest challenge. By previewing videos and bookmarking them, you provide some limitations to your students. As always, having the proper filters can also put your mind at ease.

Faith S. said...

I must admit the idea of using YouTube in the classroom scared me. There are so many clips or videos of inappropriate or useless "stuff" on the site, but after spending some time digging and after taking this class, I have noticed the benefits of using YouTube in the classroom. The pros of using YouTube is the amount of information that you have at your fingertips. But just like any closeout apparel store, you need to weed out through some of the garbage to find the real bargain.
The cons of YouTube would be authenticity and appropriateness. I found a great video about the novel "To Kill a Mockingbird," but one of the commentators used the word "smart-ass," which caused me to second guess using this really great video clip. Another con would be monitoring your students use of YouTube. I would need to make sure students don't stray too far from what we are discussing or what we should be looking for.
I guess the only way to mitigate this problem would be to get parental permission, discuss with IT department as to ways to avoid inappropriate searches, and to have a discussion about internet safety and the honor system. Maybe have them sign an agreement.

klyons said...

I currently use youtube in my classroom. The pros of using it in my classroom are that the students already have experience using it and are comfortable with it. Youtube is fun, easy to navigate, and has so many videos on various topics....something for everything and everbody! I think the cons would be that not every student has internet access at home, so all work with youtube would have to be done in class. Also, there will always be students who take advantage of cites like youtube and watch things that aren't class related. I would have to be diligent about monitoring the kids while they are working.