Quick guide to starting YouTube for Teaching By Matt Estlea Creating YouTube videos, or any other form of content for social media, is an easy way to get yourself out there. Whether you provide a service, create art, or just want to provide entertainment, the internet has given us all a level playing field to build a brand from. All you need is the electronic device in your pocket to get started. “But my voice sounds weird” Come on, when was the last time someone commented on your weird voice? No one cares. “I’m not good in front of a camera” That’s the power of editing. A 10 minute video usually consists of an hour or two’s worth of footage. So just re-film or cut out the sections you didn’t like. “What if my family and/or friends find it and mock me?” In my experience, it took about 2 or 3 weeks to get through this stage. After that it just becomes the norm. Even so, you’ll probably find that most people support you anyway. My first followers were friends and family. If you are one of the many people who want to share their work online but are scared of other people's opinions, don’t let the above statements hold you back. (And if you’re one of the few who don’t want to share their work online, this might be a nice leisurely read nonetheless) Before you start Why post content online? Excluding the price of your WiFi (just steal borrow Activate Learnings WiFi) and the price of a phone, posting content online is free. Even more so, it gives you the potential power of distribution, leverage/trust, and credibility in the long run. In the context of working with students, credibility and trust have been essential for me. I’m a young teacher that students could easily rip to shreds. I came from a dodgy school and have seen this happen many times. But the fact that I'm posting content on a platform my students consume on a daily basis, on a subject they are interested in, providing tutorials that support their learning in my own style. That also is not restricted by any educational corporate policies, government guidelines, and all the other things that are essential yet can be a pain in the neck. It has provided me with credibility and trust that students can relate to and trust. Of course the teaching in the classroom itself has to supplement this, but being relatable to students is the bedrock of my teaching. What are the risks? You effectively have the same potential power in a post, video, photo, tweet etc. as the likes of Apple, Sainsburys, Donald Trump, and your creepy next door neighbour who posts nothing but photos of his stuffed animal collection to his thousands of creepy followers. Yes they may have lots of followers, but at the end of the day a post is a post, a photo is a photo, a video is a video. Who knows what could happen with it? The internet has given us a level playing field, use it. Sound scary? Of course is sounds scary. The thought of a post suddenly gaining traction and growing out of control is pretty wild, especially if it’s something you don’t want the public to see. But there are easy ways to avoid it: - Make your main profile private - Create a professional profile to share content on instead - Don’t share anything you wouldn’t want your mum to see When you start posting content online, it’s very likely that you will experience a slow, steady, and manageable stream of followers over a prolonged amount of time. There are literally B2B businesses out there who sell services to ‘make viral content’ for other businesses in the hope of ‘quick results’. The majority of which fail and come at a big cost. Patience is the key. In addition, it also gives you time to perfect your content before larger audiences begin to watch it. My first videos were ropey. But, I was only inflicting that upon 0-10 people for the first 6 months. It took a long time to gain traction! By the time my follower count began growing significantly, I had already established my style, put in the practice, and knew many of my initial followers by name. Which really helped with growth. So what do you need to get started? What do you need to YouTube? Required: Optional: Phone Windows Movie Maker Most phones are comparable in quality to DSLR’s nowadays. It comes pre-installed on most Windows computers. Apple You don’t need anything fancy. users will need to use iMovie. WiFi Shotgun Microphone Buy your own, borrow Activate Learnings, or get an invite to Humans are good at watching low quality video, but distorted your neighbours for dinner, get their WiFi code, and sit in their audio drives us mental. It’s a nice addition to have, but front garden while they’re at work. realistically Smartphone microphones are good enough. Subject Obviously you need something to talk about / demonstrate. Step 1: Make an account ● Either create an alias, or just use your own name ● Make your channel look pretty if you want to Step 2: Plan Videos ● What are you going to teach? Use your lesson plans perhaps? ● Create bullet points of all the main points in the lesson. Don’t script it word for word. ● Order them however you please. Think of how you can connect the points together and keep the video flowing. Step 3: Setup ● Find a room with nice lighting and ideally no echo. Small furnished rooms are perfect. ● Set your camera up ○ NB. If using a phone, do not use the front camera while filming. This not only may drop the quality, but also means you will be watching yourself while talking to the camera which can be incredibly off-putting. Not to mention that you won’t be looking directly into the camera lens which sometimes looks odd to viewers. The rear camera is harder to setup, but is so much easier when filming. ● Keep in mind that not all videos need presenting. I narrated over my first few videos before gaining the confidence to address the camera directly. You could even use captions if you really want! Step 4: Film ● Introduce the video. Tell the viewers what they are doing to learn. ● Keep your notes to hand and just go for it. ● If you screw up a sentence, keep the camera rolling and re-do it. You can cut the error out later ● If you start trailing off on a tangent and wonder “How did I get here?!” re-do it from the last bullet point, edit it out later. ● Toward the end of the video, quickly summarise all the points you made. Also do a ‘call to action’. Ask the viewer to like the video, subscribe, download something, do their homework, whatever. Give them something to work with. Step 5: Edit ● I warn you, editing can take longer than the video itself ● You will also hate the sound of your own voice. Don’t overthink it. No one will care. ● Cut out the sections where you stumbled ● Proof watch the video ● Export as Movie. Step 6: Upload to YouTube ● Set the title and description ● Choose visibility ○ If you want the video to be viewable to everyone on the internet choose ‘public’ ○ If you only want your students to see it, choose ‘unlisted’ They can still share unlisted videos publicly however ○ If you only want your students to see it, choose ‘private’ Make it viewable to their email addresses only. Step 7: Distribute ● Share the web address link with your students and whoever else you want to share it with ● Comment on other people's channels ● Share the video on other social media platforms Summary If you want a great way to support your students' learning, look no further than YouTube. 16-18 year olds rarely watch TV nowadays, all their focus is on Social Media; YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, and Twitter to name a few. If you put the content right in front of their eyes, the chances of them watching it increases dramatically, even if it’s out of curiosity. In addition, the things you teach online are not only beneficial to your students, but people all around the world. As a woodwork teacher, my largest viewer demographic is 25-34 year olds in the US (See below). 99% of which would never consider enrolling on a Furniture Making course in the UK. Although, the combined 9.9% total of 13-24 year olds in the UK are all potential enrolments in the course I teach. Some of which will even be my current students. YouTube gives me a way to put my expertise in front of them. This serves two main purposes: Enrolments: - You will get more enrolments as a result of you bringing attention to your course - You will get better quality applications from students who really want to be there. - Students will have a good base knowledge of the course before starting In Lesson - Students have 24/7 access to videos relating to their course, directly from the tutor. - Content can be recycled yearly or until it needs updating I put this document together the day before it was needed, thus it was a bit of a brain dump. If it has sparked your interest and you want to know more, just drop me an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org I’d be more than happy to help you out!