Video Lessons Made Easy

Moia Rowsome Blog

Check out our popular Digital Storytelling product for iPads, 30hands Storyteller Pro, and our new browser-based version for laptops and Chromebooks, 30hands Storyteller Web.

cosn-ad_2016-0912-2Since the rise of the smartphone and faster Internet speeds, people have changed the way they access and consume content. More and more, we are drawn to videos and multimedia. Why is this? One reason may be that “Videos are processed by the brain 60,000 times faster than text.” (Psychology Today). That’s a phenomenal number! It’s enough to make you want to go out and create a video. As educators, there are so many ways video can be used with students both in and out of the classroom.

But isn’t it too difficult to create videos? Doesn’t it take too much work? Read on to see some tips on how to make the process relatively quick and easy.

Where to Use Video with Students

  • Introducing a Topic: Video lessons can be a great way to introduce a topic in the classroom. It takes the students’ attention away from the teacher and focuses them on something new and fresh to kickstart the new topic.
  • Illustrating a Concept: To illustrate a concept or perhaps experiment that you cannot do in class time, a video lesson can be very effective. Let’s say you are studying photosynthesis. It can be difficult to illustrate this immediately as it is a process that occurs over a period of time. So in order for your students to really visualize what happens, you could create an animated video with diagrams and labels and even pictures of the plant growing over time to illustrate the process. This approach to animating your content is both engaging and more easily retained by the students.
  • Changing Up the Lesson Dynamic: It’s not just science where video lessons can boost learning. You might be halfway through a play or a novel in class and decide it needs some spicing up. So to engage your students, you could create a fun video on the plot so far, the characters or the themes. In languages, this can be especially useful. You could create a video modelling vocabulary and pronunciation and your students could use this to create their own!
  • Flipping the Classroom: The most talked about way to use video lessons is with the Flipped Classroom model. But what is it? Well, the Flipped Classroom means having students watch a video (very often which the teacher has made themselves) that introduces or explains a concept which the students are assigned to watch at home. In this way, they can watch it over a number of times if they need to and they can also pause whenever they want to take notes or perhaps look something up. This means, instead of the traditional in-class lecture model, where some students find the content delivery boring and slow, and at the same time others in the class aren’t able to keep up, every student can absorb the content at their own pace. And it doesn’t stop here. The next step is to have your students carry out those tricky exercises in class time while you, the teacher, is there to help. This is instead of doing them for homework on their own. The idea is that it makes better use of everyone’s time and more students are reached as the teacher can give students more individual attention. So why not create some video lessons and flip your classroom?

Method #1 – How to Create a Video Lesson Really Fast from Google Slides, PPT or KeyNote5-pro-google



Do you have some Google Slides presentations already created for class time? Well a cool thing you can do with 30hands Storyteller is to create a video lesson directly from a Google Slides presentation. Just create a presentation in 30hands and add select the Slides from Google Drive. It will import in a flash. What about Powerpoint or Keynote? We’ve got you covered there too! Just save your presentation as a PDF. That imports into your 30hands smoothly, too. Now, you’re ready for further edits with the drawing tool and recording your narration.

Method #2 – How to Create a Video Lesson Really Fast from Images and Drawings


So what if you’re making a video from scratch? A quick approach to making a video lesson in 30hands Storyteller is to start by jotting down a script for what you would say in your lesson. You can do this in Google Docs or Word. Then number each line as it would represent what you would say on one slide. At this point, it’s time to storyboard your content with drawing slides in 30hands. With 30hands Pro, add new drawing slides and write or type the lines of your script onto each slide. If you prefer drawing simple scenes, do this instead of using text.  If you are using 30hands Storyteller Web, this process is even easier! If you have written your script out in Google Docs and numbered each line, you can import this as your storyboard directly from Google Drive. Give it a try! Once you have your storyboard, narrate over your slides by reading your script. Publish a test video to review the flow. To get to your final draft, replace your storyboard slides with higher quality images or drawings, then iterate through the process to make improvements. Use the drawing tool to enhance the video. It’s a simple as that!

Things to Consider in Your Creation Process

  • First, be sure to make your lesson as engaging as possible. While video lessons are said to be effective, they can also become tedious if they do not use interesting and relevant images. Use the Copy Slide function to make simple slide progressions, and make sure your vocal energy is high when narrating. 
  • To exemplify or model something active, take a short video and add that as a 30hands slide.
  • Make sure your video is not too long and filled with too much information. Death by PowerPoint concepts apply to videos, too, so use only enough text to support your main concepts and to highlight your narration. So keep things simple on your slides!

Well, there you have it – some tips on simple ways to create video lessons for your classes. Be sure to reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus if you have any questions or comments. And be sure to share your videos with us as we’d love to see them!

Call 781-982-9555 or email to learn more about 30hands Storyteller or to purchase it for your classroom, school or district.

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