Green Screen, Writing Tools, Kahoot [issue 20]

Don’t miss this week’s content of issue 20 of Tekiota. We will look into:

  1. Learning experiences with a green screen.
  2. Writing tools for your students.
  3. Engaging students with Kahoot.

Filming with a Green Screen

[icon name="fa-send"] STANDARD 1: facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity

John Keisker approached the Learning Technology Office looking for ideas to engage his Individuals and Societies students with their study of the Song Dynasty. Thanks to John’s passion for photography and video, we were able to compose an assignment in which the students could experiment with the school’s new green screen.

John and Amy test the green screen

Students used a variety of skills to complete the project:

  • Students researched the knowledge needed for their video.
  • Students needed to write a script in which they reinterpreted and summarized information.
  • Students gained presenting and speaking practice.

When students wrote their scripts, they had to identify the big ideas associated with the topic and talked around the ideas instead of copying text from the reading material. This helped students learn the concepts instead of simply learning facts.

Through the project, all students showed increased engagement; especially those on camera. After watching the videos of themselves, many students wanted to do a retake to make them even better.

A class set of recordings on a given topic could be put into a playlist and shared with students to be used as a study tool, or review materials for the end of a unit.

See John’s How-to-Use-Final-Cut-Pro Videos

Points to consider when using a green screen

  • Will you make subtitles for students who do not speak loudly or clearly?
  • How will you engage students who are not on camera?
  • Have students leave computer with teacher so they can make a copy of the recording directly to their computer when they are done. This was the SD cards stay in circulation and there should always be one ready for the camera.
  • Prepare 3-4 SD cards so there is a healthy supply to go around.

What are some other ways to use the green screen?

  • Virtual tours
  • Talk show
  • Historical interviews
  • Music videos
  • News programs

Read about the green screen learning experience on

Writing Tools for Students

[icon name="fa-cloud-upload"] STANDARD 3: model digital age work and learning

@CoolCatTeacher, aka Vicky Davis, wrote an excellent article on tips to help the writing process. Like us, Vicky is a big fan of dictation in Google Docs as a way to help slow typists write assignments faster. We wanted to briefly share here two more tools Vicky discovered which constitute valuable writing tools for students.

Writing Tools for Students

Writing Tools for Students

Grammar Checker: Grammarly

Grammarly is a free spell checker and grammar checker which can be used as an extension to your browser. Grammarly allows you to correct grammatical mistakes while catching contextual spelling errors and poor vocabulary usage. Thanks to the extension, it works everywhere online, including Google Drive. It also includes a thesaurus to enhance word choices.

Grammar checker Grammarly

Grammar checker Grammarly

Additionally, Vicky coaches her students to use Grammarly to check the originality of the work they submit.

Prose Simplification: Hemingway Editor

Copy and paste your text into the Hemingway web app and you will be offered color coded suggestions highlighting sentences that are hard or very hard to read, simpler word alternatives, adverb and passive voice replacements.

Check your prose with Hemingway Editory

Check your prose with Hemingway Editory

Besides these suggestions, the app includes word count and an index of readability by grade level. A nice feature is the ability to switch from Writing to Editing mode. The former removes all suggestions and provide a distraction-free interface to write with only the most basic formatting options.

Write Edit

To find out more, read our writing tools article.

Engage with Kahoot

[icon name="fa-group"] awarded to Wanda Kiernan
[icon name="fa-slideshare"] STANDARD 2: design and develop digital age learning experiences and assessments

This week’s tip of the hat goes to Wanda Kiernan who uses Kahoot to get her math students wild about solving math problems. If you have not tried it yet, head over to where you can create, play and share fun learning games for any subject, for all ages, and for free. The web app is an excellent way to create engaging formative assessments, do content review, ice-breakers, exit-cards, opinion surveys, etc. Share with us your favorite ways to use Kahoot in the classroom.

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