Guest blogger Bruce Reicher is a middle school teacher from Northern New Jersey. He has been a technology teacher for over 25 years and was happy to share his experience with WeVideo and how he uses it in his classrooms with his students.
Video and Chromebooks
Three years ago, my district was switching from tablets to Chromebooks, and we were looking for a cloud-based video editing solution. We knew we wouldn't be able to load software on the Chromebooks. We soon discovered that WeVideo was a powerful and safe solution that worked perfectly with Google Tools such as Google Drive and Google Classroom. Students' accounts were easily uploaded, and all they had to do was click on the red circle of G to log in. We found many of the same tools we were using in iMovie were included in WeVideo. I've also found that WeVideo is an ever-changing and improving product that is continuously adding new tools found in the interface.
Create and Collaborate from Anywhere
Students have the option of beginning projects on their own or choose to collaborate with a partner. This collaboration saves a lot of time when one student and their partner can seamlessly continue the project. This collaboration is a huge time saver in my class when one of the partners is absent or at another activity during my course. The partner logs into the shared project and continues working without a hitch. I used to spend a lot of time looking for students to log in when their partner was out of the class. Students can start projects on any device such as a phone or tablet and continue their project on a laptop or desktop. This is a real time-saver, the student doesn't have to be on a specific device to edit their video.
Copyright Free Collection of Assets
WeVideo not only has music, titles, backgrounds, and transitions but continually adds to its program. Two years ago, they introduced the WeVideo Essential™ library that provides the students with over 1 million royalty-free videos, audio, and image files.
This has improved videos students produce while teaching them good digital citizenship of using only royalty-free media. Students also enjoy using green screen in our classroom as well as the green screen clips inside the essential collection. I also like that my students just Google for images or video clips and can safely search right within the program. This library also includes sounds and audio effects for video and for podcasts.
Connect Seamlessly to Google Drive
WeVideo has also added a connection to your Google Drive so students can pull up scripts and rubrics once they are inside the WeVideo environment. This connection between Google Drive and WeVideo keeps getting stronger. It puts all the tools our students need in one place without having to open and close tabs while looking for documents. WeVideo has also made my workflow as a teacher so much easier when collecting video projects. I used to spend a lot of time downloading and copying projects to firewire hard drives. Now, I have students share projects with their Google Drives and then hand in their projects in Google Classroom.
Use WeVideo for Podcasting
Finally, WeVideo has added an export out for audio to its feature set. This is a game-changer for me as my students can now create audio and video creations in one powerful program. This has made WeVideo a one-stop place to go for video production and podcasting.
I'm looking forward to expanding podcasting into my current media curriculum. The terrific thing about this is that students can go to one program and are familiar with all the tools needed to make the Podcast.
Customer Service and Feedback
The WeVideo family provides fantastic customer service and feedback. Many times I'm able to get answers to my questions right away! This is incredible, considering that my school and WeVideo are on different coasts of the United States. They are very receptive to customer feedback, and I think that attributes to the success of WeVideo in the Education market.
About Bruce Reicher
Bruce Reicher has been an educator for over 25 years as a technology teacher. Reicher teaches in Northern New Jersey, where his middle school students produce a live 8-minute news show every day. Reicher's students have produced over 2,000 live shows. Reicher is known for his calm hands-on approach with students and professional development with adults. He presents emerging technology at local, state, and national conferences. Reicher has also been a board of education member for the past 7 years in Hawthorne, NJ. He is currently writing a book on media production in the classroom with two other educators that will be out in the Spring of 2020. The book is being published by Edumatch Publishing.
Check out his Wakelet collection www.wakelet.com/@reicher tech ed resources including WeVideo, Green Screen, and Student TV productions and Check out his students' morning TV show at bit.ly/CTVStudentTV.
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