Tag Archives: youtube


How to create a content strategy to grow your brand on YouTube

Having a YouTube channel is now considered a basic part of any company’s digital footprint. It’s just normal. But what do you put in it? Having a content strategy specifically designed to both get your messages across and to grow your number of subscribers.

See also: How to create a YouTube channel

You should have a content strategy specifically for YouTube, so, while you’re pulling that together, take these tips onboard:

When you’re scripting a video, it should be a precis of your company’s approach to a product or a topic. It shouldn’t be everything. Making key points, rather than attempting to cover the whole of an issue.

When you’re talking about a topic (rather than a product), try and have a point of view.  ‘Balanced’ content may be easier to deliver within the culture of your industry, but it does not drive understanding or engagement. A stronger voice is helpful to gain audiences.

Don’t be afraid of using a more obviously clickbait approach – titles which ask questions, for example encourage people to click and watch for the answers.

Make it shareable – the sort of tone, approach and product which people will pass on. Easier said than done, and will come from experimentation, A+B split testing and, probably, some videos which will fail, but the ability to experiment is key.

Storytelling is vital. A point about changes in your industry or market is better made through the story of a single consumer than in the data of millions. That data can be used and related, but finding a story which illustrates the broad thrust of the argument will resonate with users much more.

Engagement is a key factor. It’s not wise to encourage your staff to participate in debate below the line (ie react to comments), but small engagements, like encouraging users to vote on videos can boot algorithms in your content’s favour and keep users connected to your brand.

Actively encourage subscription. In newsletter, emails, messaging across your digital estate, encourage users to subscribe more than watch. Watching a video can be singular, subscribing encourage repeat and return visits. Building subscriptions should be key, the views will rise accordingly. For more tips on that, see:
Three ways to get more subscribers to your YouTube channel.

See also: The teacher’s guide to using YouTube in the classroom

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Three ways to get more subscribers to your YouTube channel

Having a YouTube channel for your business or (ahem) your ‘personal brand’ is quite the thing. People watch more and more videos online and younger audiences especially are much more likely to watch YouTube than TV.

So being on YouTube is key to your to the prominence of your business (and helps with your search profile too).

And good content is key to that, but what can you do to make sure that, when you spend all that time making the best videos you can, you’ve actually made the most of that and you’ve optimised your channel and

Bear these tips in mind:


Develop your audience through a more consistent upload schedule

Having a more consistent upload schedule will allow your subscribers to regularly see your content on their homepage and subscription feed, allowing for a more regular presence and an increased watchtime. In return, this increased watchtime would help the ranking of the content in the algorithm as this is a core metric.

Perhaps could think about tailoring different formats or  series that you could upload on a regular basis – regular interviews or scheduled updates on industry issues.

See also: How to create a YouTube channel

Optimize the thumbnails and titles of the videos

Entice viewers to click on your videos through compelling thumbnails (the small pictures that people see which are supposed to entice . Custom thumbnails are one of the best ways to make your videos stand out and get viewers watching – 90% of the best-performing videos on YouTube have custom thumbnails.

For the titles, remember that YouTube is one of the largest search engines in the world. Creating keyword-rich titles and descriptions can help viewers find your videos through YouTube Search and increase watch time – a video’s title, thumbnail, and description actually work together to tell a story about the content.

Here are some best practices for titles:

  • Include descriptive and relevant terms toward the beginning of a title.
  • Display branding and episode numbers toward the end of a title.
  • Keep titles on the short side so they don’t get cut-off due to high character count.


Understand where the audience is coming from to leverage your traffic sources

Knowing where your traffic is coming from is key and making sure you’re using YouTube’s search facility to your advantage. Using a tool like Google Trends, can help you understand what people are searching for on YouTube to be able to tap into these searches and position the your channel as a hub for such content, planning around relevant events and trends to enhance the discoverability of the channel. You can learn search tips here.


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Amazon takes on YouTube with new video service

Amazon has launched a service that allows users to post videos and earn royalties from them, setting up the world’s biggest online retailer to compete directly with YouTube.

The service, called Amazon Video Direct, will make the uploaded videos available to rent or own, to view free with ads, or be packaged together and offered as an add-on subscription.

Amazon will pay content creators 50% of the revenue earned from rental receipts or sale of the videos, according to the company’s license agreement. For ad-supported videos, the creators will get half of the net ad receipts.

Amazon’s fast-growing Prime loyalty program already offers original TV programming and access to digital entertainment products such as Prime Music and Prime Video, as well as one-hour delivery of purchases, for an annual fee of $99 also, Amazon uses Shiply’s vehicle transportation for heavy equipment which is a very important plus .

YouTube offers a free, ad-supported service as well as a $10-per-month subscription option called YouTube Red.

Amazon, though, has a long way to go to catch up with YouTube, the go-to venue for video on the internet since 2005.

“I don’t see 50 million Prime users making a huge dent in the 2 billion YouTube user ecosystem,” said Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter.

Ivan Feinseth, at Tigress Financial Partners, said Amazon had the technological wherewithal and financial resources to be a contender in any business, but was similarly cautious.

“I don’t know if it’s going to totally disrupt YouTube, or even some of the other services, but for those that are heavy Amazon users, it will have an appeal,” he told Reuters.

Amazon’s shares, already up about 57 percent in the past 12 months, rose 3.2 percent to an intraday record of $701.40.

Users of Amazon’s service will be able to make their videos available in United States, Germany, Austria, the United Kingdom and Japan.

The company has also signed up several partners for the service, including Conde Nast Entertainment, the Guardian, tech blog Mashable and toymaker Mattel Inc.

Amazon has been making a concentrated push into video.

In a client note issued earlier on Tuesday, Bernstein analyst Carlos Kirjner estimated that the company will spend about $2.9 billion on video content for Amazon Prime this year.

Amazon recently launched a monthly subscription to its video program for $10.99 and plans to offer its video streaming service as a standalone service for a monthly fee of $8.99.

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How to create a YouTube channel

If you want to post your video online so that you can share it with others, then there is no better place to start than YouTube. Free to use, familiar to all (maybe some pockets of China or North Korea aside) and shareable and with an audience of billions, it often seems like the only game in town.

So if you want to upload that video of your oh-so-cute children smacking heck out of each other with planks, or that fascinating speech from your boss that needs uplaoding to a work account, then you’ll need a channel. Without a channel, you can watch, like or subscribe to other people’s videos (with your Google account), but you have no public presence.

How to create a YouTube channel in your own name

  • First, make sure that you’re signed in to YouTube, with your Google account (obviously you may need to create one if you’re brand new to this).
  • Try to do something that requires you to have a channel – upload a video, create a playlist  or comment on someone else’s work.
  • If you don’t yet have a channel, you’ll get a prompt to create one
  • Simply check the details (with your Google account name and your photo) and confirm – and bingo, a new channel

How to create a YouTube channel with a business or other name

If you want to create a channel for work, your business or simply in another name, then the steps are slightly different:

  • Again, make sure you’re signed in on YouTube.
  • Go to All my channels.
  • If you want to make a YouTube channel for a Google+ page that you manage, that option will be presented here
  • If you want a new channel in a different name, then choose Create a new channel to set up a channel with a different name than that of your Google account.
  • Simply fill in the details to create your new channel.

All that remains now is to create videos worth watching. That’s the hard bit.

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The top 15 YouTube history channels for your classroom

There’s a preposterous amount of video uploaded to YouTube – around 300 hours worth of viewing are uploaded to the platform every minute. That’s a whole lot of content – and almost impossible to navigate. YouTube is so much more than cat videos and home-video selfie uploads. You’ll never find your way around the vast sea of content on offer, so we’re here to help. Here’s a quick starter guide to the best channels and videos to either use as raw material for flipped lessons; for homework or revision – or just something to put on the screen when you’ve lost the will to teach. From quick clips to biopics and full-on lessons, YouTube can bring your history lessons to life. 
Do you have any favorite videos you use in your history classroom? We’d love to hear what they are! Share your favorites with the Daily Genius community by leaving a comment below, visiting the Daily Genius Facebook page, or dropping us a note on Twitter.

The top 15 YouTube History Lessons

Learn History: This YouTube channel provides loads of videos on historical events related to crime and punishment and the American west.
Animated Bayeux Tapestry: Students learning about European history can watch this video which takes the Bayeux Tapestry and brings it to life.
Surviving the Holocaust: Teach students about the impact of the Holocaust by showing them how it impacted this individual.
Oliver Cromwell: Here you’ll find photos and text that tell about the life of Oliver Cromwell.
Horrible Histories History from the viewpoint of the people, rather than the Great and the Good. Done in a comic way in a series of themed sketches. From the BBC.
HipHughesHistory: Keith Hughes sees himself as a simplifier. On his channel, he  posts upbeat explainers, mostly on US History and Politics but span across World History and general interest
Elizabeth I: Let students learn about the history of England by watching this video presentation on Elizabeth I.
Gettysburg Reenactment: Bring the American Civil War to life by showing students this reenactment of a battle.
G. P. Grey Not even clear who CGP Grey is, but this is a very nice set of explainers of complex things. Often starts with history, but branches out.
The Assassination of JFK: This famous video is a huge part of American history, and you can let students watch it via YouTube.
Fall of the Berlin Wall: Classes studying modern history can learn about the impact of the fall of the Berlin Wall through this news report.
Crash Course – US history: A playlist, aggregating the history of the USA in 47 episodes.
Crash Course – World history: Another playlist, curated by the same gentleman (John Green) who put together the playlist on US history that we mentioned above. This time: same idea, with a wider brief. The clue is in the title – the only question is why it takes 47 episodes to do the US, while the whole of the rest of the world can be done in 42.
How to Make a Mummy: Created by teachers, this animated video shows how the ancient Egyptians created their mummies.
A Brief History of Mankind: This video sums up the history of mankind in just a few minutes, making it a good intro to history classes.

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The Teacher's Guide To Using YouTube In The Classroom

Forget the cat videos, YouTube has matured into one of the biggest resources for educational content ever. While it may not be as organized as Khan Academy, it’s likely got what you need if you do a little digging. You can find videos that make the subject of your lesson more applicable to students’ everyday lives. You can teach students video production and editing skills through projects and upload the videos to your classes YouTube channel.
There’s tons of reasons YouTube should be a part of most classrooms:

Spark Lively Discussions

Engage students by showing a video relevant to their lives. Video clips can bring in different perspectives or force students to consider a new viewpoint, helping to spark a discussion. Through video you can keep class exciting and new. Students will be eager to talk about chemical reactions after seeing this video:

Organize Your Video Content For Easier Access

  • Playlists are YouTube’s way of allowing you to organize videos on the site: a playlist is a series of videos you put together – they don’t have to be videos you uploaded, and you get to choose the order.
  • When one video ends, the playlist plays the next video without offering ‘related videos’, thus creating a curated environment for your students.
  • Therefore, by creating playlists of videos you can select which YouTube videos you want your students to view.
    • Playlists live on your channel, are discoverable in search results (if you want them to be), and can be embedded on your blog or class site.
    • Create a playlist of videos for each school unit so students can review them when looking to learn more about a topic or need to review for an upcoming assessment.
  • Great playlists include videos that…
    • Hook your students into a lesson.
    • Provide real-world context for lessons.
    • Help provide cultural relevance for your students.
    • Provide remediation for concepts yet mastered.
    • Provide alternative viewpoints.
    • Provide visual context (chemical reactions, primary source videos).
    • Review previously taught content.

Archive Your Work

Capture and save projects and discussions so you can refer back to them year after year. This will also help you save time as you can assign old videos to your new students.

  • Record critical parts of your lesson so you can review how you taught that lesson in previous years.
  • When absent students ask what they missed, send them a link to the video and they’ll never fall behind.
  • You can even customize who sees your videos by adjusting the privacy settings. Use this great video to learn how to privately share videos with other YouTube users:


Encourage Students To Dig Deeper

  • Give students the option to dig deeper into a subject by creating a playlist of videos related to that concept.
  • By creating playlists of relevant videos you allow students to pursue their interests without wasting their time searching for information (or finding potentially objectionable content).
  • Create a playlist of primary source video content for a history topic you’re teaching.
  • Watch this video to learn how to make a playlist in YouTube


Help Both Struggling And Advanced Students

Videos (or playlists) can help supplement in class teaching for struggling students. Students can review them at home so you’re not forced to teach exclusively to the middle 50%. YouTube user piazzaalexis uses videos like this to address misunderstandings and allow his students to review difficult concepts.


Review For Upcoming Exams

Turn test review and flashcards into easy-to-watch videos so students can hear your explanations as they study.  Create a “test review” video students can use to study the night before the big test:

Create A YouTube Center In Your Classroom

Divide your class into groups and have them rotate through different stations. At the YouTube station, introduce students to new information, allowing you to help students practice their newfound skills. When working in stations or centers, have students use your YouTube channel to complete an assignment, freeing you up to work with small groups of students.
Use this video to learn more about creating classroom centers. The teachers uses literacy centers as an example:

Add Quizzes To Videos

Create a Google Form that students complete after watching a video. You can use this quiz to get instant feedback on what they’re learning. To learn how to create quizzes using Google Forms click here. Embed your quiz on a class blog or site so students can watch a video and complete the quiz at the same time:


Create Interactive Video ‘Quests’

Use YouTube annotations to create “Choose your own adventure” style video quests.

You can also create a video guide. This example guides students to different videos about chemical reactions.

This video explains how to add annotations to your videos:

Students Can Become The Teacher

If your students watch a video of the basic concepts at home you can focus in class on applying those concepts, working collaboratively with their classmates rather than simply listening to you lecture.
YouTube user Rmusallam asks his students to prepare for class by watching the introduction to new material at home. That way when they arrive at school they’re ready to apply their learning. Through this method he has dramatically increased his instructional time:


What If YouTube Is Blocked?

Many teachers (still) cannot access YouTube in their classrooms. Never fear, FreeTech4Teachers is to the rescue with 47 Alternatives To Using YouTube In The Classroom. There’s plenty of other options on that terrific list. There’s also this approach from Tony DePrato on managing video without YouTube.
And finally…
How do you use YouTube in the classroom. Share your best tips in the comments below.

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Managing educational video without YouTube

In mainland China, where I work, YouTube is blocked. Some people and schools pay for VPNs to have a slow and throttled YouTube experience. I suppose if core curriculum content is coming from a third-party source that is being hosted on YouTube,  there are not many options – VPN is the only solution.
That being said, since I have been here I have found many content creators like Khan Academy have legal methods for schools to download and serve their content on private servers. It takes time to confirm that it is legal to download and re-distribute, but those developing for education usually do not mind.
The other reason people need YouTube, or think they need YouTube, to host their own videos is because they found some shortcuts in their software that resulted in subtle brainwashing. Here is an example of this clever menu design in the Quicktime image below.
Screen Shot 2014-03-18 at 11.04.35 AM
I firmly believe when users see built-in options like this, they shutdown, stop thinking, and simply start clicking. Since the rise of services like YouTube people have lost the skills to maintain their own media. And for those out there who are sick of ads and other annoyances with services like YouTube, it is time to consider doing something that people have been able to do since the 1990’s- serve your own media.
Not only can you do it, but you can do it better and faster than you can with most of the popular services.
That voice forming in your head that would like to argue with me is saying, “Wait! What about storage, we can’t afford to store all our videos.” Really? Are you sure? How much video do you have..have you really added it up? Did you inventory your video the correct way?
Before I was in education, I was in video production. The real stuff. TV, documentaries, etc. I was putting video online when most people reading this were learning how to spell I-N-T-E-R-N-E-T.  I know a thing or two about managing a large digital library that has to be used to create original content. Think about it, videos indexed by scenes, so you can find a 10 second segment you need for a large piece to be used in a political smear campaign. It seems time consuming because it is. It is hard work, and forces organization.
Schools need to separate their content into three types:

  1. Instructional content and entertainment you own and have created.
  2. Instructional content and entertainment content you have purchased from a third-party.
  3. Student created content, public and private.

The next step is to make a decision as to how long you will keep media from categories 1-3. I would say every year the student content needs to be purged, except for some very excellent exemplars. Students can keep their own copies. Instructional materials owned by the school should be kept for 2-3 years, but then, it needs to be updated and even deleted.
Keeping those parameters in mind, how much storage will you need? Remember you will be serving either FLV files or some form of MP4. Not only can you create these easily on Mac and Windows, you can BATCH convert them with programs like Mpeg Streamclip. You can take the files created in programs like iMovie, and make them 60% smaller without hurting the quality.
Add-up the total amount of data you are using on YouTube, reduce the size by 30% to be conservative, and now ask yourself can you afford to host your own videos. Most hosting plans have huge amounts of storage, but might limit you on your monthly bandwidth. Most allow you to add additional bandwidth if you need it. Having 2-3 accounts on the same hosting service, is an easy way to off-set bandwidth limitations for very little money.
Five gigabytes of monthly bandwidth is about 15 hours of standard definition movies. If you figure the average instructional video is 5-10 minutes long, that means 90 instructional videos @ 10 minutes at standard definition Netflix style playback. Most of the videos you can easily compress will be significantly less than that.
If one hosting account was 100 USD a year, you would be able to serve over 900 videos based-on the limitations above, even though the number would probably be closer to 1200-1500. Add two additional accounts, for a total of 300 USD a year, and you can serve 2700 videos a year or 270 videos per month. (I am not counting the summer/holidays in the estimate).  I am using a cheap account for this math as well, there are others designed for media hosting that are cheaper for larger amounts of monthly bandwidth.
Many schools have their own internal hosting, and probably have what it takes to serve Youtube quality video without any additional cost. Schools paying for a VPN to host their own content on Youtube are losing money, because VPNs are expensive and the performance is horrible. Most schools pay for some kind of hosting anyway, so the expenses listed above are most likely already in the operational budget.
Schools that can use Youtube for free are losing valuable time and control over the user experience.  The reason schools lose time, is because uploading you own videos using FTP is significantly faster than doing uploading using the built in services in software, or the web-based uploaders.
Ask yourself, how many times have you sat and let your computer work to convert and upload a video? It can take 30 minutes or it can take hours. The failure rate for uploading without FTP is also significantly higher.  Time is a currency in education, and wasting it, should be avoided.
Even students can get videos off iPads and laptops onto a private server faster than using the student Wifi to sync 30 videos within a class period. Time wasted on uploading, is time wasted on learning.
Finally, when free services are used, control of intellectual property is lost. Rules for usage and ads can be changed with little or no notice. Exposure to content can only be assured on paper, not really guaranteed. Privately hosted content can be fully controlled, and delivered in many creative ways.
That other type of media content I mentioned, Instructional content and entertainment content you have purchased from a third-party, that can be managed in some very interesting ways as well. It is amazing what one can do with a complete understanding of protocols that make podcasting work. However, that is more of a private conversation.

Do the math, and have the conversations. Learning to really manage media is a great educational process for teachers, IT administrators, and students. In the end, the learning happens within the process, so it worth beta testing and exploring.
Read more from Tony DePrato on his blog.
Thumbnail by jsawkins via Flickr cc

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Do you really have the right to be forgotten online?

Today is ‘Safer Internet Day‘ and that means it’s a good time to figure out how you can stay a bit more secure online. But online security is about a lot more than having a long and difficult password.

In fact, there’s a lot more to being safe online than anything you’ll find in today’s Google Doodle that offers you the ability to get a 2-minute online safety tune-up courtesy of the almighty Google.

One of the biggest ways to truly stay safe online for a long time is by becoming a proper digital citizen. The term ‘digital citizenship’ essentially means acting right, treating others how you would wish to be treated (with respect, hopefully), and thinking twice before doing most things like posting photos of yourself.

Which brings us to the ‘right to be forgotten,’ a phrase that is currently being hotly debated around the world as Europe and online companies like Google endeavor to figure out if web users like you and me actually have the right to be forgotten online.

See Also: Staying safe online: Google’s best tips and tricks

Let’s say we do something when we’re young and share a video of it on YouTube. We then apply for a job 10 years later. The hiring manager looks you up, sees that video, and doesn’t hire you. Wouldn’t it be great to simply tell Google that you want ALL these kinds of materials to be forgotten by the search index? Wouldn’t that have helped you get that job? Probably.

But there’s more to it than just covering up past indiscretions. In fact, this video is a must-watch today of all days – but really is worth seeing for anyone looking to learn more about how they can stay safer online now and into the distant future.

After all, the Internet never forgets. Ever.

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190+ entertaining education videos perfect for classrooms

Want to find a better way to enhance classroom lessons? Discover interesting concepts you might not normally know about? This awesome playlist of entertaining education videos (embedded below) is perfect for classrooms and will have you learning on the go just about wherever and whenever you want.
Want to better understand time travel? How about what Edward Snowden thinks about current events? All that is in this incredibly lengthy and well-curated playlist.
There are way too many videos here for one sitting. Unless you like marathon learning session (and who doesn’t?) then you should bookmark this page and come back to it when you need a little distraction from studying or some ideas on how to make complicated and often dry topics incredibly interesting.
These videos all have one thing in common. They’ll help you learn something new. They’re fun, easy to watch, and bite-size nuggets of information that even we could enjoy. Now go on, get your learn on!

How To Use The Education Videos Playlist

First, click the ‘Play All’ button and then you’ll be able to click the ‘playlist’ link on the top left of the video. From there you can navigate among all the videos. There are new videos added regularly so be sure to check back up on this playlist regularly.
You’re strongly encouraged to review the entirety of each video you may want to use in the classroom as the playlist is updated regularly and may have non-educational material added. So, use this as a jumping-off point for your video discovery needs!
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=videoseries?list=PLrEnWoR732-DZV1Jc8bUpVTF_HTPbywpE]
Got Better Videos?
Share them with @DailyGenius on Twitter or drop us a message on Facebook anytime.

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How (and why) you should use YouTube in the classroom

YouTube is blocked in many schools. There’s no denying the fact that many school administrators want to avoid having students watch things that are, well, less than educational. Unfortunately, this push to keep students safe leaves many of us at a disadvantage. How do you leverage the power of YouTube in education without having access?

Long story short, it’s time to start lobbying for access to YouTube in the classroom. If you’re looking for some ammo for your argument, this post is for you.

See Also: Your essential guide to YouTube playlists

Before we get started, don’t forget to check out YouTube For Schools, a potentially white-listed way to bring hours of useful videos into your classroom. It’s basically an education-oriented version of the mega-video site that features guides, lessons, and a lot of supplementary content perfect for most lessons. Looking for teacher-centric videos? Check out YouTube.com/Teachers for a great set of playlists for any teacher.

Why It’s Time For YouTube In The Classroom

School leaders, teachers, and parents should consider either unblocking or at least trying out YouTube For Schools / YouTube For Teachers (see links above) because it’s a free way to make lessons come alive. The price is right and all you need is a wi-fi connection and at least one device. Basically, a Chromebook, a projector, and wi-fi is all you need. That’s a lot for most classrooms to be sure … but perhaps it might be time to invest in a Chromebook, iPad, Chromecast, Apple TV, or some other piece of hardware that’ll make your students more engaged.

In any case, here are some bullet points about why YouTube rocks the classroom:

  • Students are more engaged through visually-stimulating videos and presentations (e.g. TED Talks)
  • Educational lessons are easily shared across the globe, Students can upload their own videos to demonstrate understanding
  • Students or the whole classroom (or groups) can create video replies to each other
  • Videos can supplement lessons for students
  • Teachers can spend more time focusing on students and less time explaining complex topics
  • Teachers will have a library of free information to help explain just about anything

How Teachers Are Using YouTube Right Now

What better way to explain the benefits of YouTube than by using a video, right? This one showcases how Mike Christiansen, a 9th grade social studies teacher at Kent-Meridian High School in Kent, WA, uses the video to build exciting learning opportunities.

Key Ways To Use YouTube In Education:

Download YouTube Videos

Want to download YouTube videos for offline use or to bring into your classroom? We aren’t recommending breaking any rule of any kind here. Just simply pointing out that you can download videos using YTD – the creators of this fabulous visual you see below.

Using Videos In A Flipped Classroom

You can use video to build a flipped classroom with ease. Check out this handy guide below (about halfway down the visual) to see what I mean.

How To Discover The Best Education Videos On YouTube

Be sure to actually watch a video all the way through before you show it in your class! Even if you download it for offline use, it’s important you aren’t surprised by what’s being displayed. Also, don’t plan on replacing your lesson with a video. Plan on using it as a supplement and identify videos (through creative searching and profile reviewing) that are short and offer insight that you wouldn’t normally be able to provide. In other words, choose a quick video that adds some spice to your classroom mojo and adds some information that supports your lesson.

How Do / Would You Use Videos To Enhance Learning?

There are a ton of ways to use YouTube in your school, share your best ideas with us by following @DailyGenius on Twitter or add a comment on the Daily Genius Facebook page!

youtube in classroom

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