video for reflection and learning

Using Video for Reflection & Learning

Posted on June 22, 2013. Filed under: video for reflection and learning |

teacher and video camera


The role of the classroom teacher in the success of every student is important in all educational situations. The Federal Government recognizes this in calling for “highly qualified” teachers for all students (No Child Left Behind, 2002). A part of the success of every teacher is highly dependent upon his or her knowledge and skill. A part of every teacher’s knowledge and skill is dependent upon his or her training, experience and reflection.  “Sustained and continuous professional growth toward effective… instruction is every educator’s and every school’s responsibility” (Learning First Alliance, 2000, p.2). This often begins with professional development opportunities which is necessary for every teacher to be effective in every teaching situation (Jones, 1990). It also includes taking a look at our current teaching practices and learning how to improve our teaching skills.

Today teacher candidates in all disciplines are being asked to complete edTPA’s (Teacher Performance Assessment) during the student teaching experience.  edTPA is an authentic assessment of pre-service teachers that involves creating a video of themselves teaching.  Evaluators will watch video clips of student teachers delivering lessons in their classroom, and candidates must show that they can prepare a lesson, tailor it to students of different abilities, and present it effectively. Keep in mind that this is just one section of the certification process.

While many of us are not professional videographers, we need some assistance in planning and creating videos of our teaching. In addition, we need to be able to look at these videos with a critical lens to see what we can learn about our teaching and how we can improve our practice. Using classroom videos should not be exclusive to pre service teachers who are seeking certification, all teachers can benefit from using this tool and create classroom videos for reflection and professional growth, as you will see in the second video below. One important thing to note, before you set up your video camera you should know the school district or school policy about video in the classroom.

The Teaching Channel has provided two videos which I think will assist teachers in taking the first steps toward creating and using videos to improve practice.

The first video I recommend provides tips for using video.

The second video demonstrates how to use videos to improve your teaching.

The value of creating a teaching video is that it gives us totally objective information. It tells us exactly what we really said, what we really did, not what we thought we said or did. How much time did I spend on this topic? How many times did I ask questions? How often did I move around? These are questions the video can answer with complete accuracy and objectivity.

Each student teacher candidate will be provided specific information from their supervisors, but if you would like to learn more about the edTPA you can visit their website:

If you come across any additional resources, please comment below.

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