Digital Video in the English Language Arts Classroom
Digital tools make possible new kinds of text. Text is no longer restricted to written words. It can be primarily visual, such as an animated graphic, video clip, photo slideshow, or image. Verbal information can be presented in an auditory rather than written format.
Teachers of English must now help students make meaning within and across a range of multimodal texts. These new texts, however, require new teaching strategies to engage students’ understanding. New texts require new ways of reading and comprehending, new strategies for composing, and new pairings for intertextual study, as students read across a range of media and texts.
Research is still emerging, but we know that students learn best when they use multiliteracies to read and compose in new ways. We also know that integrating visual images with written text, as done in most digital stories and multimodal compositions, enhances and accelerates comprehension. Text and pictures often say more when juxtaposed, and the effect is further amplified when motion, design, and interactivity are added.
Composing with digital video—creating digital stories, book trailers, music videos, screencasts, commercial narrative remixes,and more—requires us to examine how we produce, distribute, invent, explore, persuade, and create impact with texts written for specific audiences. Composing with digital video alongside Web 2.0 tools enables us to leverage the audience participation for authentic collaboration and feedback. Writing with multimedia tools is a process of linking message and tool, purpose and audience—while actively critiquing the very tools used for expressing meaning.
Sara Kajder and Carl Young
Excerpted from “Digital Video in English Language Arts Education” (Teaching with Digital Video: Watch, Analyze, Create, ISTE)
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Digital video affords students new possibilities as active English language arts learners. Students can use digital video to make critical connections to content and process learning, and they can use digital video to create artifacts of learning.
For example, students can watch video to engage in active meaning making and literary interpretation. They can analyze each of the multimodal layers of digital video, exploring them singly and in interaction with each other. They can use video to express—to communicate specific ideas by intentionally pairing specific modes of communicating— and to connect with an identified audience.
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Teaching with Digital Video