Last May (2008), I asked twenty of my teachers who used VC most often to complete a little survey. This is the beginning of sharing the results. Each teacher had used videoconferencing at least 6 times in the school year, and the teacher using it the most had done 12 videoconferences in the 2007-2008 school year. All of these were “curriculum videoconferencing” or using VC to support curriculum instruction.

In this post, I’ll share the answers to one of the questions. I decided to use Wordle to represent the data visually. Interestingly, it’s quantitative data (counting the number of times the word is using) represented in a more qualitative way.

**Please identify three to five positive things about using videoconferencing in your classroom. **

Isn’t it interesting that the word **students** is so huge?! **Learning**, **experiences**, and **opportunity** jump out at me. It’s all about the students, isn’t it! Click the graphic to see the words much larger. Think about each of those other descriptive words.

And, I selected one full answer to share with you. This answer is by Peggy Clore, 6th and 7th grade language arts teacher at the Coloma Middle School, Coloma, Michigan (one of our RUS grant schools). She took the Jazz workshop a couple years ago and has been hooked on VC since. One of her more memorable VCs was the Around the World project in April 2008. She has also participated in the ASK interview with Jim Stovall and Read Around the Planet.

1) Students have an authentic audience, causing them to take greater care with their work.

2) Students learn to create valid questions through the ASK kit.

3) Students reflect upon what they learn and sometimes change their thinking or make connections to what they know.

4) Some of our challenging students’ behavior is so much better because they’re interested in what we’re doing.

5) When we connect to another part of the country or a foreign country, we open our students’ world to ideas they may not learn through a text book. Most of our students do not have opportunity to travel or see areas outside of our rural community and county.

**So, how would you answer this question?** *Please comment – either with your own list of positive things about using VC in the classroom, or with your own interpretation of the data represented above.*

I love your use of Wordle! Makes it so easy to pick out the main idea. And these teachers are so passionate about their students; it’s refreshing. Always great to see that there are educators willing to utilize technology to enrich their kids’ educational experience.

This has the potential to make things more “real world” and “hands on” in an environment that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to have. It is a great experience to supplement information and material presented. Makes things more interesting and increases student engagement.

I agree on this gives students a chance to experience things they might never have a chance too. It also has the capability to make learning much more engaging and hands-on.

There are a few positive aspects of using vc in the classroom to expand the potential opportunities the kids can experience in class, utilizing a variety instructional strategies in the classroom, and relate more to students who seem to require more technology to be interested in cirriculum

VC differently keeps the students engaged in the lesson, hands on and new trends of technology that they use daily to communicate.

To have a real math application that students can practice is ideal. Learning becomes real and not something memorized for a test

I like how students are exposed to experts in the field of study while videoconferencing.

This whole idea of introducing others into the classroom over video conferencing is wonderful! I am amazed and excited to see what is available for our students. We are expecting them to learn more advanced curriculum than when I was a student, and this seems like it would help make things interesting. So many times students are bored and not interested in what was going on, but with this technology, their world can be opened up so much more.

I agree it will definitely keep the students more engaged in the lesson!!!!

I agree with how video conferencing may help challenging students, I feel that see this different approach to teaching will engage students more, including the younger students.

I believe three positive aspects of using videoconferencing would be expanding the potential opportunities the students can experience in class, utilizing varied instructional strategies in the classroom, and appealing more to students who seem to require more technology to be engaged in a lesson.

Video conferencing helps to show my students what other students are doing in the classroom.

I used the video conferencing a couple of times when I was teaching Kindergarten GT. I remember that I took them over and we did one on puppets. Someone from a museum taught us about some of the dinosaurs at their museum and then we made a dinosaur puppet. The students really enjoyed it–especially when they figured out that there was a ‘real’ person speaking to them and answering their questions–instead of just watching a video! I think that we should definitely take better advantage of this part of education.

3 to 5 positive things about using VC in your classroom:

1) It’s freakin cool and the kids will find it intriguing – regardless of the content.

2) The content will generally be worthwhile since I would probably VC with an expert.

3) It gets both the students and me out of the funk that comes with too much classroom routine.

4) For a science-based course such as mine, it is a great way to show technology in action as a tool for life.

VC in the Art Room

1. Guest artists – to show preferred medium, technique used.

2. To broaden students’ views of fine arts.

3. Visit a virtual museum

4. Cultural exchange

video conferencing allows students an opportunity to have an experience that they can carry outside the classroom. Many students do not have the opportunity to change their environment and as teachers we are constantly looking for ways to expose our children this serves as another mean of exposing students. It also allows our students to think outside of the box.

I think this is a great tool to help parents who struggle with students at home! If they can see what happens in class, helping students complete homework and study for tests should be a breeze!

I think this will be a great experience for students, it is time-saving and interesting for students.

Being from a community where the students don’t have a lot of experiences, being able to bring the world to them is a great opportunity.

Teaching economics allows me to bring current events into the classroom. I think using IVC technology to allow us to communicate with different experts on particular subjects: stock broker, college professor, banker, etc. I think the Q&A opportunities would benefit my students immensely.

Video Conferencing is especially good opportunity for people living long distance exchange their ideas.

Video conferencing is a great way to take my kids across the globe. I need to make more use of this in my my IB classroom.

Great use of VC and integrating tech into education and connecting global concepts

I love the hands on learning that I am seeing through this interactive video conferencing. I think that problem solving through hands on learning is definitely the way to go to keep children engaged throughout the entire lesson..

VC is great for bringing ethnic music and instruments to life in my music class.

VC gets the students engaged in what we are learning in the classroom! They aren’t stuck the same old classroom routine, which can become very boring to the students. VC can bring their learning to life anf=d make learning that much more fun!

VC is great for engaging students in learning

I love the idea of reducing negative behaviors through this interaction. As a special education teacher and and AEP teacher, I can truly see the benefits of video conferencing.

VC is engaging and shows the students real life applications.

The Opportunity for students is tremendous!! there is so much out there to learn!

To actually see things in real time can be so much more meaningful and impactful than just pictures.

I think it is a great way for students to be able to visit/explore museums/places without having to leave the classroom

VC is a great way to introduce things in the classroom that the students would not normally get to see and experience.

VC is a fantastic venue that allows students to have a window into areas which might otherwise not be available.

Video conferences are a good way for students to learn about new concepts with the use of technology. For example, it is not always feasible to take high school students on a field trip because teachers may have in between 4 to 7 periods a day, but when a teacher shows a video conference of a field trip, students still get to enhance learning in a new way.

Video conferences would be a great way to allow students to complete projects with other classes, to go on virtual field trips to places we may not be able to go for English (such as England to study Shakespeare), and engages students in a way that makes them want to learn more.

I love that my daughter is able to use wordle, word cloud, and so many other technology pieces even in the 2nd grade.

I believe this is a great way to integrate real life relevance within each course thought in school. I think this is a really innovative way to surpass our budgets within schools and be able to take virtual field trips to art museums. As an art teacher this is great way for the entire school to take a field trip through an engaging and active experience.

Although I have never signed up or been part a virtual field trip, it is an experience I would like to one day give my students. I believe the process is not difficult and only takes a little bit of planning.

Video Conferencing is a great way to give the students real life experiences. It is also a great way to incorporate project-based learning into the classroom. I am looking forward to trying out in the near future.

Gina Willmon says:

Video conferencing is perfect technology for students of all ages to experience real people,places, and things without leaving the classroom.

Video conferencing allows students to have access to authentic experts.

This has the potential to make things more “real world” and “hands on” in an environment that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to have. It is a great experience to supplement information and material presented. Makes things more interesting and increases student engagement.

I have not used VC in my math class but after seeing how the videos could impact the learning I plan on trying to find something that will correlate with my math content.

I haven’t used video conferencing in my classroom, but would love to incorporate it.

Video conferences enhances student’s learning experiences in a different way. I believe that it creates a more learning environment for students in a new and refreshing way as they learn in the classroom with their peers.

I love that video conferencing allows students to use the technology they love while still actively engaging in their own learning. As a generation engulfed in technology, I want my students to learn to use technology to better their education. Students will not know how to do this unless they are taught and given the resources. VC is a great way to begin introducing a practical way for students to learn, become engaged in their own learning, and ignite a passion for a specific topic.

I think its a great tool that exposing them to something that is common in the workplace as well.

I like that it gives students a chance to see a world beyond their own, especially for our students who do not have the means or opportunities to travel outside of their neighborhood. It allows students to meet and communicate with a variety of experts from different backgrounds and professions and connects the learning they do in school to the real world.

When I read Peggy Clore’s response, I immediately thought about higher order thinking and the ability for students to synthesize information. I am also fund of our students having exposure to other cultures and countries. Overall, VC seems like it will address students’ academic and socio-emotional needs.

Very interested in using this soon!

Teaching in a rural area where the students are not world-travelers it is a great opportunity to expose them to different cultures in this manner.

This is mostly used by our high school students, but I would love the opportunity to try this with my 3rd graders!

By using wordle it makes it easy to see the message you are trying to convery.

Video conferencing would be great for pre K. Interrupting their naptime and routine makes a field trip not as enjoyable. Video conferencing will give pre K an opportunity to have a field trip in the classroom and still get a nap.

I think that this a great way to get students motivated about learning. Being able to see an expert and ask questions about the subject material is great.

Video conferencing is a great tool in introducing our students to other cultures, whether they are present in the classroom (even better) or not. Since multiculture is a strong aspect in todays’s educational system, we can use it to exchange information and expand multiculturalism even more.

As an art teacher, VC could be used for number of collaborative projects.

This allows me to bring real world examples into my science classroom.

VC would open many opportunities for teachers on my campus and as part of the media services I can offer in the library

I think video conferencing can help all students. VC offers a different approach to teaching will engage students more.

I think VC is an excellent tool to reach the students in a different way than the normal classroom setting. It is interactive, yet challenging. Its engaging, not dull.

I’m exited about finding ways and professions that apply to the math standards that my students are learning.

I think VC is an amazing tool to use in the classroom because it allows your students to go on a field trip that would otherwise be to expensive and impossible to attend. For example, the trip to NASA.

VC also allows the student to learn about technology and how it is helpful in the classroom.

VC allows the students to be engaged in the learning.

VC lets you take kids you could never really take them to. They get to learn from experts in so many different fields. Its amazing!

I haven’t used VC yet, but definitely see how it could be beneficial

I could see how this could capture the students attention

Opens the door to many possibilities

Havent used it yet, but definitely will incorporate.

I think video conferencing can help all students. VC offers a different approach to teaching will engage students more.

Video conferencing allows for real world application.

I believe that VC is a great way for teachers to connect students to learning. Our students are living in a technology savvy world and using VC in the classroom is another way to get our students connected to education in a way that appeals to them.

Wanda Poindexter

January 6, 2017

It gives real life experience and gives the student contact with an expert in the field. It can help a student see possibilities for career choices by seeing a role model.

1. I think its great for students to be able to explore different places and learning with other teachers without having to actually leave their own place.

2. Students behavior can decrease because they will be interested in the lesson.

3. It gives the school the opportunity to give their students all these possibilities to learn and see around the world without having to worry about expenses.

VC is a way to give my students someone to listen to besides me. They get someone else’s perspective on the lesson I have taught. VC holds their interest because they have live interaction with an expert in the field. VC instructors have access to things we do not or probably couldn’t have in the classroom.

Last, but not least, VC makes a boring lesson for the students so much more fun. If it is fun, it holds their interest.

I would have loved using VC when I was teaching history. Most of my kids had never even been out of the town they lived in. To show them a world outside of what they knew to be, would have been such a joy to share with them!

I think VC is a great tool to allow students the opportunity to explore a topic in depth by an expert in the field. They are able to ask questions, gain new perspective, and become engaged with an actual audience rather than just a video.

I think that video conferencing can help engage students that the teacher cant always reach everyday. This is a way to approach each student in a different way with the same learning information.

Keeps students engaged on the lesson content through the modality in which it is presented.

It keeps the students engaged. They are able to speak with experts and it’s refreshing for students to hear from someone other than their teacher and parent.

I think that this would be a great resource for students struggling with some real-life concepts.

I love VC. It gives students a visual of what they will or are learning in the classroom. It takes students out of the classroom without leaving the classroom. It would bring to life what they are learning about.

I love the idea of being able to show students other cultures and parts of the world that they may never have the opportunity to see first hand.

Great idea to bring different experiences into your classroom for real life engagements.

I love the fact that IVC allows students to go outside their classrooms! Especially in low socio-economic districts that is important!!

This is such a great idea because students get to see things they normally wouldn’t get to see in the real world! It’s so cool that they can have these experiences

The few times I have skyped with people in other states, my students have loved it! They love getting to see what life is like in other places.

I think and believe that it is always a great benifit when you can relate real world events to lessons being taught.

My district is small and doesn’t offer IVC, but I think it would be great that my students could learn from other students.

I think IVC would be a great addition to any classroom.

I think IVC can be incorporated into any classroom and is a great opportunity for the students to learn from different mediums as well as real world situations.

bring lessons to life, student exposure to evidence outside of their communities, convenience

This is a great way to bring the world to students who may otherwise not receive this experiences.

This is a wonderful way to bring lessons to life and to expose students to other things!

I love the idea of bringing the outside world into the classroom. My struggle has been conceptualizing the scheduling due to teaching six classes a day that are 46 minutes long. Do you use the same speaker six times or use different speakers for each section?

I love the Idea, great visual and a great way to enhance the learning experience.

I love the idea of Virtual Field Trips through video conference. It is a great way to allow student to experience things that they may never get a chance to otherwise.

I love the Video conferencing it allows students to have a great learning experience.

I love video conferencing.

Increase student’s engagement

It may take a lot of time up front to prepare but I think the students find it very interesting and thought provoking. This is especially true for the visual learners.

Overall a great tool to use.

1.This will definitely evoke interest from all students.

2. Will cater a lot towards the visual learner.

3. Breaks the monotony of lecture style teaching.

4. Gives opportunity for the educator to remain creative.

5. Demonstrate work and care from the Teacher.

It is a great way to see other places in the world without having to go there

I see a lot of potential in using VC in the classroom. A great way to expand learning out of the classroom without actually leaving it.

VC can be beneficial in low-income areas where resources are not always available. Feeling part of the experience is beneficial for at risk students, LEP and all students in general.

VC allows you to stimulate your students and bring the classroom alive!

I have used VC in the past with a Kindergarten class. It was very exciting and students got to experience a place that they normally wouldn’t have access to. We live in a small rural community so our students need more access than a field trip can give.