In Stage 1, we heard that watching a video by itself isn’t often helpful.
Great teaching involves many simultaneous, intentional choices by a master teacher. These decisions are much like those of a great film director who uses multiple camera angles, lighting, and sound to create a powerful telling of his story. In the same way film students learn from being able to simultaneously view a completed film while listening to a director’s commentary (a “bonus feature” on DVD’s), so we should develop multi-camera-track videos of exemplary classroom teaching with a master teacher’s commentary which explains the many intentional choices the teacher made before, during, and after the lesson to maximize student learning. Viewers could watch the same lesson from many different camera angles and follow not only what the teacher does, but more importantly what all of the students do as a result of the master teacher’s choices. Such videos could be indexed by segments so teachers could quickly go to only the section of the video which demonstrates their chosen professional learning target.
The creation of these multi-camera-track video samples would allow pre-service teachers, new teachers, and veteran teachers to better understand ALL of the components involved in creating a powerful learning experience for students. The current practice of trying to capture an instructional event with one camera angle at a time, does not adequately capture the many variables required to be manipulated in a precise manner in order to get the desired growth in student understanding. For example, when I was in high school and college I did not learn science in an inquiry-based manner. However, I’m expected to create these types of experiences for my students. I need to see a clear example of such teaching strategies in action in order to move toward teaching in that manner.
First, we will create free-standing video and sound-recording stations that can be placed in various parts of a classroom. Initially, we will purchase a readily available surveillance recording system that simultaneously captures multiple camera feeds of an event. We will then need to create an easy way for viewers to change between camera footage while viewing the videos so that viewers can explore the impact on student learning from the various teacher’s instructional choices. The last step is to create an optional sound track where the master teacher describes/commentates about the pedagogical choices that she made prior to the lesson, during the lesson, and after the lesson. Once a method and hardware configuration can be created to take such videos, practicing teachers would have a powerful way to capture and view what REALLY happens in all parts of the classroom.