Thursday, May 23, 2013

Sharing the Great Events in Your Classroom

Sometimes technology can be used for the simple things like reporting out what is happening in the classroom, school, or district. It is a great way to keep family informed about what their children are doing while at school. Often parents appreciate the effort because many people work long hours and can not volunteer or visit the classroom on special occasions. To give parents a glimpse of what their child is doing can go a long way in building positive relationships with parents and guardians. It also is a great way for grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. that live a distance to feel a part of their relatives' education and lives. I have received many email thank you messages from relatives and when I run into people in public they often mention how great it was to see this event or that event.

It is fairly easy to upload a video to sites like Vimeo, YouTube, SchoolTube, TeacherTube, etc. and then embed the video on a blog, website, or wiki. Once your site is established and added to regularly, your students' family will visit the site often. If you want to spend a tad longer, you could use iMovie, other software, or an app to add a title, effects, and credits to polish up the video a bit. No matter how simple or elaborate your video is, it will be a wonderful addition to your communication with parents. Our district has parents sign a form at the beginning of the school year giving rights to post student work and pictures. Make sure that you have permission from each parent/guardian before uploading your videos.

This short video is an example of something really cool that was happening at one of the schools that I work at. Most likely parents would have not known that a local celebrity singer visited the school during lunch time and sang with students. I thought it would be good for parents to know about it so I took some footage using an iPod Touch, pieced it together in iMovie, and then it was embedded on the school's website, plus it will be on our district's television station. Share, share, share! Parents love it.