TEFL Video Resource: YourSkool

logo2.gifYou may remember the TEFL Logue interview with Thom Kiddle (and if not, you’re getting old, it was less than two weeks ago!) where he mentioned one of the online projects he’s involved in: YourSkool, a video sharing site for schools.

Current videos range from conference excerpts to three-headed elephants, and you can also find one on the markets in Chiang Mai, Thailand, an event to bring together children with and without disabilities in Bulgaria, and my personal favorite: Through the eyes of…(watch and see how long it takes you to guess).

There’s also “Monk meets tiger.” I’m not really sure what to make of this one.

At the moment, Thom is making an effort to increase the number of videos of teachers introducing their schools. If you can make a video – you can do it. With so many of us around the world, doing the same job…imagine the resource at your fingertips if teachers from a variety of countries shoot and post videos of their schools. I still recall a “Daily life of a teacher in China” which appeared on the web several months ago…see what you can come up with!

All you have to do to join YourSkool is share your email address and come up with a unique user name and password. You also need to be okay with not sharing, you know, “Paris Hilton home video” type content. Really, you’ve got YouTube for that kind of stuff.

And even if you don’t have a camera, there are plenty of ways to make use of the resources at YourSkool. If your school has Internet access and a computer lab, students can select three videos, compose a brief description of each, and compare and contrast them on different levels to decide what makes a good video…and then create their own videos. Or with a little preparation, you could design a scavenger hunt of sorts: how long is the longest video about Thailand? How many tigers can you see in “Monk meets tiger”? There is a video of a teacher introducing his school in Chile – what city is it in and what does he say about the weather? Finally, you may be able to select a few with a variety of possible discussion topics in mind, have students watch them, and get them to come up with discussion topics or questions for others. For this, I think the Bulgarian one about disabilities might be good (for a discussion on disabilities and/or just sport), and either “Monk meets tiger” or “Through the eyes of…” (for discussion on wild animals in captivity/stray animals/animal rights in general).

Check out YourSkool and see how you can use it at…your school.