Students use video to share their stories

In California and Texas, WeVideo adds another dimension to 1-to-1 Chromebook implementations

After completing a 1-to-1 deployment, educational technology specialists at a Southern California district attended an edtech conference to find a resource that would allow students to create and edit video on their Chromebooks. There, these specialists found WeVideo, an online video creation platform designed for education. 

‘Ease of use’

“We were drawn to its ease of use and how well it integrated with Google,” says Ben Bush, educational technology specialist at Bakersfield City School District. “Once we got into the software, we saw how we could record using green screen and chroma key, and then seamlessly edit that.”

The state’s largest elementary school district first piloted WeVideo in June 2017 and then implemented the platform districtwide in the fall. Since then, students have made videos, in which they interview teachers about black history or persuade their audience to read certain books, for example. Teachers, administrators and curriculum instruction specialists also use WeVideo to share these student-created videos, podcasts and other rich media projects with the community.

Communicating and collaborating

Since implementation, students have found more ways to communicate and collaborate. This means a lot to Bush, who once worked with deaf and hard-of-hearing students and saw firsthand how their disabilities isolated them. “Students at Bakersfield can now use the tone of their voice and their body language to express what they mean; they’re not necessarily restricted to just pencil and paper,” he says.

“Whenever I see students communicating their authentic message, it’s always been really powerful for me.”

Military children tell their stories

In 2012, a Texas district deployed Chromebooks as part of its 1-to-1 initiative. “At the time, Chromebooks lacked the ability to edit and record videos,” says Roland Rios, director of technology at Fort Sam Houston ISD, which serves military children. “I was looking for a viable, strong solution, and once I found and previewed WeVideo, there were so many wonderful features that I just couldn’t pass up.”

“Whenever I see students communicating their authentic message, it’s always been really powerful for me.”

Fort Sam Houston administrators have students use WeVideo to express what it’s like to be a military child. This effort takes place in April, the Month of the Military Child. “Military children are incredible,” says Rios. “They’re always moving from school to school. Sometimes, Mom or Dad is overseas for months or years at a time. We wanted to celebrate how students have overcome those obstacles and how resilient they are.”

As a result, military students have uploaded videos from Italy, France and Germany to share their experiences. “I think our military population is going to appreciate that, and maybe those who aren’t aware of how much these kids sacrifice will learn how wonderful these children are,” says Rios.

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