6 Tips for Leveraging Video for Teacher Professional Development

Learn how to use video for teacher professional development
Contributed By

Stasia Decker-Ahmed

Professional Writer

6 Tips for Leveraging Video for Teacher Professional Development

Posted in Pro Tips | April 18, 2019

According to the 2018-2019 Global State of Digital Learning Survey, providing effective professional development is the top challenge for administrators. It's critical to find the most successful ways to provide relevant and practical professional development for educators. Digital methods, including video, are increasingly becoming part of the educational landscape. There are several important ways you can use video to maximize the effectiveness of your teacher professional development.

1. Improve Peer Collaboration

Peer collaboration is a powerful and productive avenue for almost all instructors to improve professionally. There are several specific ways you can use video to increase the effectiveness of peer collaboration.

  • Create Videos of Lesson Plans: Educators can make short videos of instructional practices for their peers. Instructors can explain teaching techniques that work in various settings. A school can build a library of these videos that are available for others to check out when they need ideas for similar lessons and subject matter.
  • Look into another Instructor's Classroom: Instructors can go a step further than explaining lessons. You can create videos of an instructor actually teaching a particular lesson in their classroom. Using an educational app, instructors can upload individual videos.
  • View Videos Together: In-house workshops could include educators viewing these videos together. You can share them with a learning group that provides critiques and feedback. This could lead to brainstorming ideas to improve both lesson plans and the teaching methods used during instruction.

2. Personalize Professional Development

You can use video to provide individualized instruction that meet specific professional needs. Seen Magazine points out that for years educators have promoted differentiating instruction for their students. This should be done for educators during professional learning as well. The following are a few specific examples of how you can personalize videos during professional development.

  • Introduce New Methods of Teaching: When instructors are learning new teaching practices, you can use videos to break down new strategies into a step-by-step process. You can create videos that are grade level and subject matter specific.
  • Provide Targeted Coaching: You can put together videos to provide instruction that is specific to the professional needs of each educator. Targeted coaching with videos can go beyond subjects and lesson plans. You can use them to help educators improve their teaching style and technique.
  • Deliver Objective Coaching: Evaluating educators can often be subjective. Sometimes an instructor will not see in themselves what a coach or an administrator is pointing out. When a coach and an educator view the video together, they both view the same thing at the same time. A video provides evidence-based critiques that objectively pinpoint areas where improvement is needed.

3. Increase Self-Evaluation

In self-assessment, using video is an objective-driven and effective tool. Recollection of events, even a few hours after a lesson has been taught, is sometimes faulty. Replaying a video provides an excellent opportunity for accurate self-evaluation. There are a few tips instructors can follow to make video self-evaluation more effective.

  • Wait several days or a week after making the video to view it. This will help provide more objectivity and a better perspective.
  • When finding areas that need improvement press pause and take time to analyze and evaluate the root cause of problems and weak areas.
  • Choose two or three areas where improvement is needed and make specific changes.
  • Create a second video at a later date and compare the second to the first after changes in teaching methods, style, etc. have been implemented.

4. Provide Educators with Choices

Instructors will be more apt to learn information if they have some choice in the material they'll use and the method by which they'll learn. According to Skyward, videos provide not only choices, but convenience. While some professional development requires the entire staff to get together at the same time or face-to-face with an administrator, many times this isn't necessary. The following are a few ways videos can be used to provide both choice and convenience.

  • Create a Video Library: An Institution can create a video library so educators check out items when it's convenient and learn at their own pace. The videos can be put together by other educators, administrators, or technology specialists.
  • Encourage Group Learning: You can conduct both one-on-one coaching and peer collaboration through video sharing. Educators can each view the same video on their own time and later share ideas on how the methods and practices viewed can be incorporated into the classroom.

5. Create Virtual Learning Networks

Administrators can form learning partnerships with other districts to create a virtual network. This can be done with institutions across town or on the other side of the world. Tutorial videos can be created on topics ranging from test preparation to parent engagement. Instructors should be able to easily access these videos at their own convenience.

6. Set Clear Guidelines

When using videos for teacher professional development it's critical to set clear guidelines regarding how educators will use them. Instructors need to understand exactly how to effectively use the videos during professional development as well as who will have control of them in order to make the use of videos as effective as possible. This is because many people are apprehensive about how they appear on video or are concerned how the videos may be used in the future.

There are a variety of ways you can use videos to enhance teacher professional development. One of the great aspects of using video is that they can be effectively used at all grade levels and for virtually any subject matter

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