Tech Integration Post #9 of 10: Create Concept Review Videos For Students And Parents

Throughout the whole of the previous school year, I often wondered how to reach more of my student’s parents and engage them (directly) in classroom concepts. I wanted to somehow have the ability to connect parents with what was happening in the classroom, and at the same time offer parents the opportunity to practice fundamental math concepts with their children, based on materials I had created for them.

Originally I had planned to video myself explaining math concepts such as place value, number sense, addition and subtraction, multiplication and division. When I first tried to video myself I had to consider things like lighting and position of props. It turned out to be time consuming and somewhat difficult.

Recently, I found a solution, and want to share it with you.  I use the iPad app, Explain Everything to create math review videos.  Explain Everything is an easy-to-use design tool that lets you annotate, animate, and narrate explanations and presentations.  It’s like an interactive whiteboard for your iPad! You can easily create dynamic interactive lessons, activities, assessments, and tutorials using Explain Everything.  It is possible to record your voice, add images, change pen colours and vary the thickness of your pen lines.  Not only that, but you can easily edit your video, and export to several different formats including, YouTube, Evernote, and email.

The intermediate division of my school is going to be focused on improving math skills this year, and it is my goal to email or host these videos in a place for my student’s parents to view before school starts, during the first few weeks or school, and at any time a review is needed.  So, the next time a parent of one of your students asks, “What can I do to help my child with math?” send them a link to one of your newly created math review videos.  It’s that easy!

Here’s a couple I made today.  Feel free to tell me what you think:

Interactive Whiteboards (IWB): Post 1 of 2

I’m attending my first IWB workshop on Friday June 18 so I thought I’d compose before and after posts.  Presently I haven’t actually used an IWB in a classroom so all the information is from research I’ve compiled.  Early next week I’ll be able to offer additional information once I’ve completed the workshop.

I’m convinced that every classroom in Canada will have an interactive whiteboard (Smartboard) installed within the next 5 years.  It is the next evolution of the chalkboard, so you might as well embrace it now.  Is resistance is futile?

What exactly is an Interactive Whiteboard (IWB)?

  • A large display that connects to a computer and projector
  • The projector projects the computer’s desktop image onto the display
  • Your learners control the display with electronic pens, fingers, or other devices
  • The display is typically wall mounted and is movable

As early as 2004, 26% of primary classrooms in the UK had IWB’s.  The BECTA, government agency promoting the use of technology integration in the classroom, completed a two-year study recent and as a result of that research, is working on an expansion plan for IWB in the classroom.


  • Increases student engagement
  • Engaging with material in a different way 1
  • Objects are able to be manipulated in a hands-on way with an IWB i.e. measuring angles in geometry 1
  • Encourage a different, more collaborative kind of teaching 1


  • Not enough training for teachers
  • First year of introduction leads to little/no significant impact on a learner’s academic performance
  • Teacher’s focus more on the technology than on learning outcomes
  • The interactive nature of the IWB can make some relative mundane task take longer than necessary particularly with low functioning students

It’s time to open up the dialogue surrounding the use of IWB in our classrooms.  What are your thoughts?