Do you use YouTube in your classroom? If you follow along with me on Instagram or have listened to any episodes of my Easy EdTech Podcast, you know that I love to use multimedia. YouTube is a great space for gathering information and I hope these tricks will save you time and help you make the most of this online space.
This blog post includes seven YouTube tips for teachers. I’ve put together a free download with a few more tips to explore! It’s not Halloween-themed but I thought the 13 tips would be a fun number for this not-so-spooky resource.
YouTube Tips for Teachers
Share a video from a specific starting point
When you click on the Share button underneath any video, a few different options appear on the screen. Click on the “Start at” button and choose the time you want the video to start. It will default to the current time of the video. Imagine you found a great video to share with students but it is very long. If all of the pertinent information takes place after the 25 minute mark, this feature allows you to pick the starting time. If you only want students to watch five minutes of the video starting at a certain point, this helps them skip ahead.
Check Out Channels
Look for channels from favorite creators
YouTube channels are created by different users to showcase their work. Use the Filter option below the search bar to search for a channel or click on the user icon to see more of their videos and video playlists. Finding a great video on YouTube can sometimes feel like hitting a home run. One way to make it easier to find high-quality content is to look out for accounts you recognize. You might want to check out channels from favorite content creators you already know from other media sources. Here’s a link to National Geographic’s YouTube channel.
Check your account
Make sure you sign in with the “right” account
Lots of us have more than one email account we use throughout the day. To make sure you are receiving relevant recommendations and accessing correct bookmarks, check the top of your screen to make sure you’re signed in with the “right” account. Although it might not seem like a big deal on the surface, YouTube keeps track of your viewing history and favorites. This data gives you recommendations and makes it easy to find any channels you follow. Double check to make sure you are signed into the account you use to find videos for school before starting a new search.
Follow a favorite channel to get updates
You can subscribe to YouTube channels for free by clicking on the red Subscribe button next to a user’s name. Following a favorite channel gives you better video recommendations in general and specific updates about new videos. We don’t know what we don’t know, so video suggestions can be useful when we might not have thought to search for something. If you find a great content provider you might not have the time to search through all of their videos. Following their channel can serve as a reminder to go back and take another look at all of their videos and playlists.
Find different types of captions (other languages)
You can turn on the captions for YouTube videos using the Settings button. These captions are autogenerated by YouTube or uploaded by the content creator. For certain videos you may be able to turn on captions in other languages. When you show videos to your entire class, turning on the captions may be helpful for some students. Showing students where to go to find the captions (in English or another language) can help them build viewing independence. The captions can also help students catch a word or phrase that is new to them and will appear if they pause or replay the video.
Virtual Field Trips
Locate 360 videos for a virtual field trip
There’s nothing like the real thing, but sometimes a field trip is simply out of the question (aka going to the Moon). Although there are lots of types of videos on YouTube, searching for a 360 video can give students the ability to explore a new place in every direction. A 360 video can help students go beyond a “regular” video and feel like they are behind the camera.This content can help students better understand a part of the world they haven’t been to before. When using 360 videos for a virtual field trip, you can lead students in a discussion about their observations and wonderings.
Speed up or slow down the playback speed
Every video on YouTube will start playing at the speed at which the video was originally made. You can change the playback speed of any YouTube video to make it play slower (like .5 or .75 speed) or make it play faster (like 1.25 or 1.5 speed). Some students might need to watch a video a little bit slower if the content creator is speaking very quickly. Other students might feel less engaged in content if it is moving too slow. If you are previewing a video before sharing it with students, you might want to watch at a faster speed.
13 YouTube Tips and Tricks for Teachers
As I mentioned at the top of this post, I recently put together a free download with a few more tips to explore! It’s not really a Halloween theme but I thought the 13 tips would be a fun number for this not-so-spooky resource. You can click here for the free download. Each tip includes a picture and a section on how the tip might be helpful in your classroom.