YouTube Annotations

This is for all you teachers who proudly wave the tech-geek flag.  The annotations tool built into YouTube is a novel, interesting and powerful tool that will allow you to add hotspots, hyperlinks and text bubbles to your videos.

Roi Werner does a fantastic job at explaining how to annotate your video by demonstrating throughout his series of videos how each option works.  As soon as I read the article and then watched the videos my mind began racing with possibilities.

In any K-12 classroom this feature of YouTube could be used to introduce topics.  A teacher could record a short introduction and then pose a simple multiple choice question.  When the student clicks on the response it would link to a video explaining the response.

Individually or in groups students could build projects with the finished product being a multimedia, annotated video with links to websites covering their topic of research.  Along the way they would become more tech-literate: learning how to validate sites and confirm sources before adding them to their finished product.  Just remember, if they are linking to other videos they need to be youtube videos.

I know, I know, I can hear you saying "There's the rub. I can't ask my students to do research on dogs skateboarding or out of focus home movies."  My response is, remember, Khan Academy started on YouTube and there are other, amazing resources on YouTube if you know where to look.  YouTube has an education channel where, as a teacher, you can feel comfortable allowing students to explore.  There are many different catagories set up in YouTube to help guide and filter the viewer.

So, explore, try something new, ask you students for help.  You may all fall into a teachable moment.