Last week, I blogged about my EDTV thinking and some future plan ideas. There are many reasons that I love blogging, but one of which is that it can start a conversation. This is exactly what happened with this post.
The conversation started thanks to Nancy Angevine-Sands and a comment that she left on my post. Nancy has always made me think more about parent engagement versus involvement, and her comment here pushed my thinking even further.
- First, she wondered about the use of a YouTube channel. I actually have a YouTube channel that I used a lot many years ago, but I’ve used less over the years. When we started creating these EDTV videos for camp, we were focused on making them short. The idea was to make them between 1 and 2 minutes, where we would share a few ideas and provide families with some home learning options. I always think about YouTube for longer videos — probably because this is how I used it so many years ago — but it doesn’t need to be just for these. The conversation on the VoicEd Radio Show this week, reminded me that many people regularly access YouTube. Maybe uploading videos to this space would be a way to not just engage our parent community, but also the larger community.
- Then, she mentioned having a meeting to explain these options to families. This is a great idea! In our school community, I have heard that informal conversations with parents can be very beneficial. I’m almost imagining a table set-up — maybe even at a Meet the Teacher Night — where we can share more about EDTV and the value of these videos. This could also be a great way to find out more about topics that families want to hear more about, and target recordings to meet these needs. Having an anonymous survey might work well to hear input from some families, while chatting about options, might work well for others. Often people love to munch and mingle, so I’m envisioning adding some snacks to this table space.
- After that, she spoke about the use of multiple languages. Her comment made me think about our new Language Curriculum Document, and the discussion about translanguaging. I’m wondering how we can not only invite families to share learning in multiple ways and multiple languages, but how we can be more intentional about including multiple languages and experiences as part of our video provocations.
- Finally, she spoke about how “effective and meaningful engagement takes place in the home.” She had me thinking about the question prompts that Aaron Puley always used to suggest that I leave at the end of my blog posts for families. While we might be able to write a question or two down in a post after recording a video, I wonder if we can also include these questions as part of our videos. Maybe sharing the ideas orally as well as writing them down would also meet different family needs, as having text there could help with translation apps. There is always so much to consider.
This discussion evolved even more when Doug Peterson, Stephen Hurley, and Heather Swail discussed my post on the This Week In Ontario Edublogs VoicEd Canada Radio Show. Here are some points that really stood out to me.
- First, there is value in variation. In my last blog post, I included an example of a video that I shared with the camp. Nobody is only going to want to see videos of me, nor will they only want to see videos in my car. This summer, we have had classroom instructors, site leads, and administrators record and share videos through our private Instagram account and on Twitter. For the upcoming school year, I would love to have classroom educators and administrators also share videos for EDTV. When I shared my last blog post on Instagram, Jennifer Casa-Todd mentioned a willingness to be a guest recorder. This would be an interesting option to explore. Could there be guests across our Board and across Ontario, who would share their ideas and question prompts on EDTV?
- Next, there is the point about a background. I will admit that for the summer recordings, we didn’t worry too much about settings. People recorded videos everywhere from their car to their classroom, but maybe we need to consider some different settings. Seeing specific items or areas, might also further the learning. I wonder if a green screen would be helpful at times. This is not something that I’ve worked with a lot in the past, but maybe there is some new learning for me in this area as well.
- Finally, there is the question about student involvement. It would be wonderful to have ways for students and families to also partake more publicly in this sharing. I wonder if this would help further create a community of learners. This summer, I know that some families began to tweet us about their home experiences and/or responses to their question prompts. This could work during the school year. Families might also comment on an Instagram post, a YouTube video, or a blog post, but are we getting enough participation in this way? Considering the media component of the new Language Document, I wonder if there’s a way to link this sharing within the school environment. I can almost imagine a Speakers Corner set-up — am I dating myself for remembering this TV show? Definitely more to contemplate here.
I’m not sure how many answers I have now, versus further wonderings, but as the end of the summer draws closer, I want to keep these thoughts and questions at the forefront of my mind. That’s why I’m blogging about them here. What other ideas and questions do you have to add to the conversation? It will be interesting to see the evolution of EDTV. Thanks for being a part of the process!