Watching Classroom Video Productively
By Meg S. Bates, posted February 27,
In our recent TCM article, my colleagues and
I outlined how educators can facilitate effective conversations around
classroom video. The question we sought to answer was “How can facilitators
help other educators learn from video?” For this blog post, I would like to dig
into classroom video from the other side of the coin: “What can participants in
professional development do to get the most out of video?”
best answers I have heard to this question come, not surprisingly, from
teachers. Over the past few years, I’ve led a team that worked with elementary school
mathematics teachers to collect classroom video and posted these videos in an online
teacher learning community.
Once the videos were posted, we found that some teachers struggled to connect
to the videos. Some posted rich reflective comments to the videos, in which
they analyzed student thinking and suggested possible instructional responses.
Others posted simpler comments evaluating the teaching, such as, “The teacher
was very good at questioning.” (See Bates, Phalen, and Moran  for more
about teacher responses to video.)
team wondered how to encourage more reflective commentary and less evaluation
of the videos. We asked the teachers who provided the videos for their thoughts
about this. They developed a list of tips for their colleagues, which included
read new research in the field, I often come back to this list. So many of
these tips are confirmed by emerging research and are successful in my own facilitation
of video viewing.
are your tips for getting the most out of classroom video? Share your own tips
in the comments and add to the list. We want to hear from you!
Post your comments below or share your thoughts on Twitter @TCM_at_NCTM using
Bates, Meg S., Lena
Phalen, and Cheryl G. Moran. 2016. “If You Build It, Will They Reflect?
Examining Teachers’ Use of an Online Video-Based Learning Website.” Teaching and
Teacher Education 58 (August): 17-27.
Dr. Meg Bates, firstname.lastname@example.org, is
a curriculum developer and researcher at the University of Chicago. She is
interested in educational technology and novel forms of teacher professional
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