This school year, to no one’s surprise, has been a grind. But I would also say if you think about it, we shouldn’t be surprised innovation has been seen in large amounts too. While some of it was required, other parts for teachers coming up with new ideas on their own or extending ideas they needed to do.
While last spring was survival mode, I experimented enough with a streaming program OBS Studio to know that I wanted to learn more over the summer and use it to produce videos for my AP Stats class in the fall that were far more professional than what I put together in the spring. I also vowed to put my entire set of lessons on YouTube by the end of the year. As we are in review mode for the AP Exam, I have seven videos left to make and I’m done for the most part. I have a few to fill in but besides those special episodes, I’m done. Honestly, it will be weird when it’s complete.
The biggest takeaway from my, “teacher tries to become YouTuber,”experience? I read early on in getting OBS Studio setup is to just start recording and praying and it’s so true. There’s always going to be things to tweak. Once you get something you’re mostly happy with, hit record and get going. And as your learn more over your recordings, you’ll make the tweaks and get better. I found with something like recording a course, I would make bigger changes (layouts, adding an outro at the end, etc.) when I changed units as they were natural breaks. Some things, like thumbnails and titles that have better keyword recognition, you can easily change retroactively as you have time. Things like discovering WeVideo to edit your videos easily, you just have to live with the fact some videos aren’t as polished as others.
As teachers we often try to make sure we have things as perfect as possible. The big take away from my video experience is that often just jumping in is the best way to find what works for you. Which if you think about it, is much how we ask our students to act in class. Try this. If you make a mistake, fix it. You’ll get better the more you do it. We just need to remember to take our own advice sometimes.