Thursday, May 31, 2012

PFL IV .... Video Subtitles

The PFL IV students have worked hard on creating subtitles for a TED talk of their choice available on Youtube.   The example you see below is from the wonderful speech from Chimamanda Adichie: The danger of a single story. The ability to listen carefully and work on finding appropriate equivalent words in another language was the focus of this activity.  Students also had to cooperate with colleagues as they split up the caption writing work among the group. In order to do that, a Google Doc was used a a shared space for work, so each student would negotiate the transition from one "translator" to the other as they split up the timing. Color coding was used by the teacher, Deborah Rebello, to help students in their writing revision. You can see a snapshot of the Google Doc below, which was created using the timing format accepted by Youtube captioning.

This was also an exercise for all of us in terms of posting copyrighted material on Youtube. As the video was reposted with the subtitles, Youtube immediately recognized it as "matching third party content". You then have the option to claim Fair Use by providing a justification, which in this case was the use of the video to support foreign language learning and shared within a school environment. Youtube then returned a "claim release" allowing the video posting.

Enjoy the video and the translation!

Monday, May 21, 2012

PFL .... Advertising videos

Video is a great media to encourage student voice. In this project, students used video as a way to convince an audience of what they believed in after getting involved in  research, discussion and formal presentation. Therefore, the video was part of a long process. The importance of belief was demonstrated by a student who started researching about the use of bikes in São Paulo as a means of transportation, but then realized she did not believe it would really work out, so her focus had to be tweaked.

The choice of digital tools was an important part of the project, so students were encouraged to try out different tools to express video-like motion. This resulted in the use of  SlideRocket,  iMovie and a Screencast of a Prezi presentation, as shown in the examples below. This choice of tools allowed for creativity and  innovation which is one of the standards to be used at Graded for technology integration. The combination of playback music, screencasting and SlideRocket or Prezi was explored as a solution to technical issues at the time to generate the desired impact of an advertising video. In this process, we could all see a trend in how  the notion of video is blurring between different applications.

Even though the videos were the final step in a longer process, they were also a process in themselves. As Laureana and I reviewed the project, we decided that for next time, the students will be given more structure and check points along the way. That type of structuring also seems useful to develop the Legal LARK culture we have been taking about. So on my HS Academic Tech Support site I created a page for Video Project Elements, suggesting the use of an organizing table to adjust timing , script , corresponding resources and citation elements. On video projects like these, were many images and other videos are used, students tend to forget where they found those resources and sometimes it is hard to go back to check elements for giving credits using proper citation. You will notice the range of effectiveness in citing resources: from a "very general" mention of Youtube on the first video to a proper citation on the first video. You will therefore see videos with still some corrections to be made, which in terms of LARK, represent the process we are all in.

Doing a video project involves many skills and requirements, as well as time and effort.  As students get more used to all the skills and requirements, including citation to all types of media, it will be easier for teachers to raise expectations. Also, as we get more experience with Fair Use and publishing for larger audiences, I believe students will become more sensitive to the use of copyrighted materials and options available, as well as be more consistent in reviewing video productions.  In this project, you may still see some minor Portuguese mistakes, which in a PFL class represent a lot of effort and language evolution on the part of students, as well as limitations in time and reviewing capacity. As videos tend to be seen as final products, we easily forget about the process. These students were engaged in a beautiful creative process, with a lot of language acquisition and development going on. The projects are posted on the PFL 4 class website for peers and teacher to comment on. A sample image from the class site is also shown after the videos on this post. Congratulations to all students!




PFL 4 Website - Student publishing page