Flipping the classroom is the new trend in education. I decided a few weeks ago I was going to pull certain aspects of flipping into my class, primarily the notes and having them accessible later for the kids. One product that is out there to do free recordings is Screencast-o-Matic. I have used this site for a lot of tutorials and presentations. In fact, I have had my students also make screencasts of their presentations to send to me because I felt it was important to do the public speaking aspect, but keeping an entire class interested for three days of presentation is hard at any age.
The site is very easy to use. You click the start recording button, make the dashed box fit the area you are using (I tend to have the powerpoint or prezi screen ready to go in presentation mode) and press record. You start talking and presenting. You have 15 minutes to record. When it is done, you save it and export it in several different formats, easy as that.
Screencast-o-matic does have a few downsides. The free version does not allow you to store more than one video on the server, but, if you export to your server, computer or upload it to youtube, you have no worries. If you are flipping your class and need more than 5 minutes of video, this is a great site to use. I have had a lot of positive experiences with it and would recommend it for any tutorial building, presentation needs.
A few ideas for use:
1. Flipping the classroom. Record your lessons (if you have an elmo that has software linked to your computer, you can record as you present to the class for later reference or use a powerpoint and type in the information. Save the files to your computer and upload them as you need them.
2. Class presentations. Have the kids record a presentation and show it to the class. It makes it something you can refer to later if you have several ways of grading things.
3. Tutorials. If you are having students/ colleagues use a specific web 2.0 tool or the library catalog, use screencast-o-matic to walk them through the steps. I used this to record a tutorial about setting up the teacher website. It was a huge hit and everyone who watched it felt confident in their end product.
4. Capturing a video stream. Sometimes, we come across a video clip that is just perfect for a lesson but we don't want to use the entire youtube video or spend the money on the movie. If you screencast it, you can record the clip and save it. Do not forget to follow copyright laws and procedures and use creative commons, but, it is a faster way to get that clip of a video than downloading and editing in movie maker or a similar program.