Pesan Sekarang

Pesan Sekarang

Videos as a Learning Tool

Top Four Ways Videos Can be Used in Teaching English

Many of us would frown upon the idea of a child left with an iPad with his or her eyes glued to YouTube.

Why are teachers using videos in class? Are they being lazy?

There has been increasing concern over the use of videos with children and the effects on their learning and development. Mindlessly watching videos on end and using them as a source of distraction for our children can be harmful. However, are all videos bad? How can watching videos become a positive learning experience?

Let’s take a look at how videos can be good learning tools for language development, and how parents and educators can make use of these videos to scaffold their child’s learning.

Videos and Language Development

1. Speech

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Videos are great sources for modelling speech. As they watch these videos, children can model and pick up the correct pronunciation of words, how words are used together, pace of speaking, accents, emotions and more. This is a form of subconscious self-correction that can help in their day-to-day communication and their learning of the spoken language. Exposure to conversations used naturally and in context can help to improve fluency and expression, which are important in Oral Communication tasks (Reading Aloud and Stimulus-based Conversation). When watching a video, good and bad examples of speech could also be pointed out and discussed.

2. Vocabulary

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Videos provide us with content from a diverse range of topics – from simple day-to-day occurrences to the tribes living in the Amazon Rainforest. These videos introduce us to new topics and hence vocabulary that we would not normally be introduced to due to their less frequency of use (think: ‘indigenous’, ‘nomadic’, ‘shaman’). The meanings of these words can then be looked up and discussed with parents or teachers, helping to increase the vocabulary bank of our children. Students with a wide vocabulary have more words to access when speaking and writing.

In addition, context is also important in understanding vocabulary. The visuals and audio provided by videos help us to understand words easily without the need for further explanation, as opposed to learning by definition from a dictionary. Seeing a word used in context not only helps students to understand the word and remember it, but they are also more likely to use it appropriately when they encounter similar situations in the future.

3. Knowledge and Ideas

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Similarly, the range of content available allows viewers to explore topics and ideas that they may not have the opportunity to encounter in their everyday lives. How often do children get to witness, first hand, a robbery – which is a common Composition topic! Composition writing requires a good understanding of realistic scenarios which may be difficult to make up on the spot. Videos, then, allow our children to visualise and provide them with a wealth of scenarios and narratives that can boost creativity and improve their writing. Oftentimes, videos also open up new points of view that allow the child to think deeply about a certain topic, which can add depth to their discussions and writings.

Knowledge of the world is also an important factor in reading comprehension, especially as readers start reading more complex texts. According to a study done by Schneider, Korkel and Weinert in 1989, readers with high ‘expert’ knowledge of a topic remembered more of a text on the same subject than ‘novices’. Prior knowledge also allows for a better understanding of the text, which then enables students to use this information better.

4. Motivation/Engagement

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Videos can also generate interest in a topic. Given the range of videos available on the internet, students may come across something new which captures their interest or spurs the formation of questions in their heads. Students who are interested in a topic are intrinsically motivated to learn and are more likely to pursue it independently, such as through researching and further reading. This generates more knowledge and allows the student to gain a deeper and more comprehensive understanding of the topic.

To conclude…

Videos are great teaching and learning resources. While content definitely plays a big role, the scaffolding provided by us adults is equally, if not more, important in transforming these sessions into rich, meaningful learning experiences.

So next time, don’t be so quick to pry your child away from the screen. Why not sit down and watch some videos together?

Blog author LCentral team of English specialists

Behind our team of dynamic teachers is a support team of English specialists and curriculum experts, who are responsible for the development and delivery of LCentral’s programmes. The Curriculum Support Team is committed to ensuring that all teachers fulfil their teaching potential. The team provides teachers not just with curriculum support but also with ongoing training and professional development.

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