Video Reflective Practices
Have you ever wanted to be a fly on the wall to get a clear picture of how you do your job, how you interact with the world around you, and how others respond to you? Have you ever thought back to an event and wondered if the details really happened as you remember them? How would that impact your personal and professional growth? Imagine if someone gave you the opportunity to do all those things. With video reflective practices, you can.
Many professions use video for training, and education is no exception. Different devices and products make it possible, but we may wonder how much of a difference it can really make. Is it worth the time and effort? Is it worth the discomfort that can come from watching yourself? A recent study conducted by Dr. Kasey Clements-Hutchinson investigated video reflective practices and answered a lot of those questions. And they used our favorite video reflective tools—VIEWpath® and the EduCam360®!
Video Reflective Practices Study
The school district chosen for the study, Julianna School System (pseudonym), had previously installed VIEWpath and EduCam360s in every classroom. They also valued reflective practices and peer feedback on a district level. Three different teachers from each of three different schools were asked to participate. None of them were brand new; in fact, they all brought at least three years teaching experience to the study.
The results of the study are very enlightening and make a great case for classroom video and video reflection for teachers. Teachers reported observing things happening in their classrooms that might generally go unnoticed. They gained insight into their students’ engagement, understanding of concepts taught, and how to improve that understanding. The teachers also reported gaining a better self-awareness—a more realistic picture of their strengths and weakness.
Video Reflective Practices Benefits
Video reflection gave teachers a clearer picture of what happened in their classrooms and a better understanding of some unacceptable behavior. They could assess how different students learned best. Teachers could further see that some students who got off task did so because they didn’t understand the content. The teachers then made immediate adjustments in their scaffolding, questioning, and delivery to improve student understanding and increase student engagement.
One of the biggest benefits seen in the study was the teachers’ improved self-awareness. Video reflection showed that self-perception and reality were not always in sync with each other. Teachers saw strengths they didn’t realize they had and noticed areas where they wanted to grow. One teacher reported, “It was so eye-opening; I saw some things I liked, and I saw some things I changed.” The ability to clearly see what she was doing right and what she needed to change was very helpful for her. When adults are self-aware, they are more open to change and see the need for more growth.
Everything we do in schools is intended to enhance student achievement. Video self-reflection enhances opportunities for this by giving teachers insight into their classrooms, their instructional practices, their strengths, and their weaknesses. They gain a clearer picture of their students’ needs and how to best meet those needs.