Yesterday I was a bit harsh on TeacherTube. I thought that my rather grouchy commentary on the site’s service would attract some supporters of it, but it turns out all of the commenters on the post were in agreement; TeacherTube is a sub-standard tool for sharing video in an educational setting.
Which is why I thought it would be worthwhile to mention a video sharing site that I think is doing everything right. I hesitate to call it an “educational video sharing site”, because that makes it sounds SchoolTube is filled with instructional videos on how to properly multiply two digits numbers. The truth is, SchoolTube is a wonderfully creative community of student and teacher created videos that addresses almost all of the concerns I shared yesterday about the poor quality of video sharing sites designed specifically for education. What makes SchoolTube so much better than TeacherTube?
There is none! SchoolTube relies on a subscription model with light advertisements. That means advertisements aren’t being strung across the bottom of your students’ creative content, and the ads that do pop up on the site aren’t nearly as bad as the typical “FLAT BELLY RULES” adverts all over the net. If you want special priveleges, you can always sign up for a subscription, which gives you extra features.
I didn’t even have a chance to take a second sip of coffee before my upload was complete. They gave me a little game to play while the video was uploading, but I had barely gotten past the instructions when I was notified that the upload was complete. No errors, I didn’t have 15 required boxes to fill in, and it was FAST!.
I even got a polite e-mail notifiying me that they had received the file and that it was being held for approval. Which is another benefit of the site. Everything is moderated, so there’s little concern about the content shown on the site. No fears though! Teachers can sign up as moderators, so they can approve their own content, which I think is a smart move on SchoolTube’s part.
3. My Homepage……has my videos on it, YAY!
I even have the ability to set a default video for my channel, so when people visit my profile they can be greeted with a video of my choosing 🙂
The designers they have working on the CSS and the backend are earning their paychecks. Not only is the site extremely faster than TeacherTube, but it has a seamless look to it. The embeddable player looks just like it does on the SchoolTube page, and functions the same. I could gripe that the service still isn’t as fast as YouTube, and I noticed considerable lag in the video buffering (so much so that I paused it until it was done loading fully), but that’s a minor issue with streaming flash video. The player itself is sleek, and could almost be mistaken for your own personal video player running on your website.
5. Are There Any Better?
Sure, there are plenty of video sharing sites out there, but with the high quality of content found on SchoolTube, a superior user interface, and good tech behind the service, I think I’ll be sticking with it for awhile now.
Just for grins, I enjoyed the following video produced by students at Kennesaw Mountain High School in Kennesaw Georgia. With a child due in 3 weeks, I had no idea I was mis-pronouncing dilate all this time!