Student Produced Video Field Trips


4 - Before: Technical Planning ↓

Make the technical planning a team effort with a mini-team of students you have selected for the technical portions of the video. Experiment and learn the tools together so you have a team of knowledgeable, experienced students to help with future efforts in your classes and others.

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Learn UStream (or other live streaming service) functionality ↓

  • Set up a membership using an email address and password you won't mind having students see.
  • Create a "channel" within the video streaming site so all your videos can be archived there and easily found by URL.
  • Read the tech support for your type of computer (Windows or Mac).
  • Adjust the settings you choose for your channel to comply with school policies. For example, if your videos must be password protected, set up your channel that way.
  • Turn off automatic sharing of your videos under "new videos" or "Broadcasting now" options to avoid having the general public discover your students as they are live streaming.

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Ensure the video URL is not blocked at school ↓

Before calling your tech mini-team together for a tech test, try opening these web addresses at school:

  • the direct URL where you will log in to stream your video
  • the URL where your audience will WATCH the video
  • the pages where audience chat is entered/displayed

Ideally, you would already have checked on this as part of your check of school policies.

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Arrange for a "contact classroom" ↓

Find a teacher whose class will definitely be watching the broadcast (perhaps a team teacher in your school or another school in the district). This contact classroom must be willing to help you test video and audio a few minutes before the actual broadcast and must be reachable by phone, ideally direct dial (or cell) for tech checks.

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To conserve bandwidth, consider large group viewing ↓

If multiple classes within your school want to watch the show, suggest that they plan for one computer and projector for a large group so they are not battling each other for the Internet connection. Streaming video is taxing on the school network. Your tech department will be more willing to permit the URL if you make this arrangement!

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Photos taken during a video field trip by Merriwether Lewis Elementary, Portland, Oregon in celebration of Earth Day 2009.