Last month, 16 teachers from across the country got together at Google’s Seattle office for the YouTube Teachers Studio — a sort of bootcamp to learn how to best use YouTube in the classroom.

Jon Corippo, a Google Certified Teacher and Apple Distinguished Educator, was among the group, and came back with ideas about what YouTube was great for.

INSPIRATION. Videos are, in effect, changing education and learning. We are now past the point of debate. Flipped teaching and the ubiquity of high-performing teachers using YouTube are clear evidence of the shift. Check out this video, which shows the profound shift caused by the digital revolution. It’s gotten 14 million-plus hits — far more than any cat videos. There are many more of these, too.

MORE ACCESS TO STUDENTS.  With flipped teaching technique, educators can be available 24/7, on smart phones any other Web-enabled devices. This use of video is changing classrooms all across America. See how Will Kimbley does it.

GLOBAL CONNECTION. YouTube allows teachers to easily distribute lessons to a potential audience of millions, something that was unthinkable only a few short years ago. Educators can connect, collaborate and innovate as never before. The Khan Academy videos have been watched by more than 20 million people across the world. Check out Salman Khan’s explanation of DNA.

CUSTOMIZING VIDEOS. You Tube now allows online video editing, making it easy for anyone to edit without expensive software. All you need is a smartphone and an Internet connection. Here’s a YouTube editing tutorial that explains the simple steps.

QUIZZING STUDENTS. Through the use of YouTube live annotations, teachers can now create open-ended “video quizzes,” along the lines of a “choose-your-own-adventure” book, which have live links for students to choose from at the end of a short video. Picking the correct answer moves you through the activity and the “wrong” answer gives you more information or a review. Here’s how.

Five Reasons Why YouTube Rocks the Classroom 8 September,2011Tina Barseghian

  • MonkFishLiver

    Beyond all the whizbang features of using videos to teach students, the fact that college will cost upwards of $100k yearly in the next decade makes using technology imperative.

  • Carlson Antje

    I love using the poetry reading videos or the musical renditions of certain poems. Loreena McKenitt did a marvelous job with her rendition of Alfred Lord Tennyson’s “The Lady of Shalott. My students loved it too.

  • Anatoly Learner

    There is great way for collaboration as Social Youtube for watching video together. What do you think about it?

    • Janet Abercrombie

      I think it’s more powerful if students watch it separately, watch – think – pair – share, then write. That way, every student has to think (instead of waiting for the frequent-flyer hand-raisers) and everyone has an opportunity to respond.

  • RJ

    this would be a wonderful tool unfortunately in the backwards state of West “by god ” Virginia, us hillbilly educators are not deemed responsible enough to allow students to use Youtube, so its BLOCKED throughout the ENTIRE state.  Youtube, PLEASE HELP!!! 

    • Janet Abercrombie

      Are you able to imbed video into an outside website? I have an edublogs site for my class and I’ve been able to embed video. Edublogs is probably not blocked.

      I’m happy to talk you through the process.

      Janet |

    • Lisa Fusco

      Lots of districts that block YouTube – don’t block TeacherTube I have had lots of success finding educational videos from YouTube on TeacherTube Also you can use to download the video to your local computer and then share it with your class. Hope this helps. – A former Hillbilly Teacher…:)

      • Brian, The life of

        Why don’t you give a shot, its free for teachers and students.  Every video is “moderated” by an educator.

  • Janet Abercrombie

    One of my favorite ways of using YouTube is to “trick” students into learning things. My students are learning partial sums, differences, products, and quotients. Instead of sending them home to practice (where their parents can’t usually help them – parents learned another method), I send home links to YouTube videos where teachers and students are teaching the methods.

    The homework: Watch the videos. Decide who teaches it best. Debate on Google doc (or class website).

    Janet |

  • Thanks Tina for this article.. I’m especially enamored with Khan Academy and the video on ‘video quizzes’.

  • I love that YouTube is rolling out cloud-based editing, however simple. I tried hard to find a good solution for my Spring Video Fundamentals class, but JayCut, the best one, was problematic. Nice find. This tech will only get better.

  • Brian, The life of

    Why don’t you give a shot, it is free for teachers and students and it is allowed in almost every school in the country during school hours.

  • Rondaa

    On using it for homework, am I the only one who has many students who don’t have internet access available to them outside of the school?

  • My husband teaches History and Social Studies, he uses YouTube in every lesson plan. 

  • Orbisonp

    Can anyone tell me the best way to save a youtube video to able to play in the classroom?   

    • Anonymous

      Try Googling how to download YouTube videos. I haven’t tried it myself, but I know teachers do it.

    • blueskies

      Use to convert Youtube videos from .flv to .mov and you can have downloaded files and use them.  It’s fantastic!

  • sam

    i’m evil!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • sam


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