Showing posts with label imovie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label imovie. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Some of my Favorites - Creating Green Screen Videos

This week is school vacation week here in Maine. I usually take this week off to go ice fishing on Moosehead Lake. Unfortunately, that's not happening this year. Instead I'll be "staycationing" and working on some projects around home. While on my staycation I'll be sharing some of my personal favorite tools and tips.

Making green screen videos can be a good way to engage students in researching and planning. That research and planning is fundamental to making a good video. The video is the reward at the end of the process. There are many things that students can do with green screen video production tools. Here are three green screen video projects to consider having your students complete. 

Student Newscasts
This might be the most common use of green screens. Students can create a newscast complete with weather forecast set in front a weather map.

Step Inside a Book
Take the concept of a book trailer video one step further by using green screen production tools. Have students place themselves in front of various backdrops that are representative for settings, scenes, and characters in a favorite book. This is a particularly good strategy for fiction/ fantasy books because students can draw their own backgrounds and characters to use on the green screen. 

Guided Tours of the World
Have students research a collection of places around the world then gather pictures or video clips of those places. Students can then use those pictures and clips in the background as they highlight and narrate the tour.

Free Tools for Making Green Screen Videos
iMovie for Mac and iPad. If you have an iPad or a Mac, you probably already have access to iMovie. It's a great tool for making green screen videos. If you've never tried it, watch this tutorial for the iPad version and this tutorial for the Mac version.

Through the combination of Zoom's virtual backgrounds and Adobe Spark Video it is possible to create green screen videos without actually using a green screen. Watch this tutorial to learn how to do that.

Finally, in the paid version of WeVideo there is an option to create green screen videos. Here's my tutorial on how to use WeVideo to make a green screen video.

Friday, July 12, 2019

How to Create a Green Screen Video on an iPad

Last night I posted a tutorial on how to create a green screen video in iMovie on a Mac. After I Tweeted that some folks asked me about making green screen videos on iPads. As I promised to them, here's my tutorial on how to create a green screen video on an iPad.

Materials and Tips for Making Green Screen Videos

  • Your live action needs to be recorded in front of a green screen. You can purchase screens specifically made for this purpose or do what I do and head down to your local Walmart an purchase a queen size green bed sheet. 
    • If you do choose the green bed sheet option, make sure you stretch the sheet tightly enough to remove any wrinkles.
  • When it comes to lighting, the goal is to remove any shadows and cast an even light on person(s) in the video and on the screen itself. Again, you can buy lighting kits made specifically for this purpose or use a couple of cheap clamp-on lights like these that I have in my office.
  • Whenever possible try to have students use images and video clips that are in the public domain as the background for their videos. Pixabay and Pexels offer large collections of public domain videos and pictures. 
If you're interested in making green screen videos on Chromebooks or Windows computers, I recommend trying WeVideo. You can watch my video tutorial on using WeVideo to make green screen videos here

Thursday, July 11, 2019

How to Create a Green Screen Video in iMovie

Creating green screen videos is be a fun way for students to share what they've learned through research about a place or event. Making green screen videos is also a great way for kids to make their own weather forecast and newscast videos. Through the use of green screen editing students can virtually appear in front of almost any landmark, appear on stage in front of an audience, or any just about any other place that they can find a picture or video of. If you're interested in having your students create green screen videos, here's my short guide to making green screen videos in iMovie.

Materials and Tips for Making Green Screen Videos

  • Your live action needs to be recorded in front of a green screen. You can purchase screens specifically made for this purpose or do what I do and head down to your local Walmart an purchase a queen size green bed sheet. 
    • If you do choose the green bed sheet option, make sure you stretch the sheet tightly enough to remove any wrinkles.
  • When it comes to lighting, the goal is to remove any shadows and cast an even light on person(s) in the video and on the screen itself. Again, you can buy lighting kits made specifically for this purpose or use a couple of cheap clamp-on lights like these that I have in my office.
  • Whenever possible try to have students use images and video clips that are in the public domain as the background for their videos. Pixabay and Pexels offer large collections of public domain videos and pictures. 
If you're interested in making green screen videos on Chromebooks or Windows computers, I recommend trying WeVideo. You can watch my video tutorial on using WeVideo to make green screen videos here

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Veescope Live - A Free Green Screen App for Your iPad

Veescope Live is a free iPad app for creating green screen videos. Of the free iPad apps for making green screen videos that I've tried, including all of the most popular ones, Veescope Live is easiest to set-up and use even with the annoying quirk of menus not always closing on the first tap (and that might be a reflection of my iPad and not the app itself).

Even though it is a green screen video app, you can actually use the Veescope Live when recording against any flat, solid color backdrop. I was actually able to use it against the beige wall in my office, although it did work better when I used an actual green screen backdrop.

To get started with Veescope Live you do not need to create an account nor do you need to use an email address to use the app. Simply open the app and follow the clear directions to set-up the app for recording your green screen videos. Setting-up the app for recording is easier if you have your iPad standing up in a case or set in a tripod. That is because the app needs to take a steady image to set the color keying for your videos. The other part of the set-up that you should be prepared for is setting the white balance. Veescope Live will automatically set the white balance for you, but you do have to hold a blank white paper in front of the camera for a few seconds (tip: if you have white card stock, use that because it won't wiggle while you're holding it the way that standard paper does).

Once you have Veescope Live set-up on your iPad it's time to start recording. But before you hit the record button, select the background or backgrounds that you want to appear in front of. Veescope Live provides a gallery of background images and videos that you can use. The app will also let you import images and video clips to use as backgrounds (check out Pixabay or Pexels for free images and videos). After selecting your background you're ready to record your video. Recordings are automatically saved to your iPad's camera roll.

Veescope Live is free to use to record and to trim your videos. The free version of the app will put a watermark on your video (small, but noticeable). The paid version of the app ($2.99) removes the watermarking. Since all of the videos you record in Veescope Live are saved to your iPad's camera roll, you can quickly import them into iMovie to combine them with other media clips that you have on your iPad.

Applications for Education
Green screen apps like Veescope Live are great for students to use to create their own newscast videos or weather report videos. The app could also be used by students to create "world tour" videos in which they place themselves in front of landmarks and report on the places that viewers see in the video. 

Monday, August 7, 2017

Alternatives to YouTube's Video Editor - It's Going Away

Earlier this summer Google announced that the YouTube video editor will be "going away" on September 20th. Since then I have fielded many requests to suggest alternatives to the YouTube video editor. Here's a run-down of the recommendations that I have been making.

YouTube enhancements are not going away. 
It's important to note that if you have only been using the YouTube video editor for things like cropping the length of your video or applying visual filters, you will still be able to do that in your YouTube account. Trimming the length of a video, adding interactive end screens, blurring faces and objects, and applying color filters are all considered part of the "enhancements" that you can apply to your videos. Those features are not going away.

YouTube Photo Slideshow Alternatives:
YouTube's photo slideshow creator was a nice tool that let you pull images from your desktop or from your Google account, drag them into a sequence, then add music from a library of more 100,000 Creative Commons-licensed music tracks. Fortunately, there is not a shortage of websites and apps that offer the same features.

Stupeflix, Sharalike, and Animoto all let you import a batch of pictures and add music to quickly create an audio slideshow. Animoto and Stupeflix both let you add text over your images while Sharalike does not. Sharalike, however, allows for much longer videos than Animoto and Stupeflix will create. Sharalike and Animoto offer iOS and Android apps while Stupeflix does not. Finally, Animoto and Stupeflix offer free education versions for teachers.

Basic Video Editing:
iOS and MacOS users have access to iMovie for free now. If you're looking for a video editor for your students to use on iPads or Macs, iMovie is more than adequate for the vast majority of classroom projects.

Windows users can still use Windows Movie Maker. Microsoft is not officially supporting it on Windows 10, but you can still download it and use it on Windows 10 computers. But later this year Microsoft will be releasing Story Mix which is essentially the replacement for Movie Maker. This video provides a preview of Story Mix.

Chromebook users and those who cannot install software should look into Adobe Spark and WeVideo. Adobe Spark is free to use. You can upload images and videos to use in your final product. Adobe Spark will let you record narration on a scene-by-scene basis by simply holding a record button while you talk. I have some tutorials on Adobe Spark that you can watch here and here.

WeVideo offers a robust web-based video editing tool that rivals the features you can find in iMovie. The limitation of WeVideo is that in order to access its best features like voiceover, green screen, and high resolution production you will have to purchase a subscription. School pricing starts at $199/ year for 30 seats.

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Best of Free Technology for Teachers - Survey Results

Last week I posted a Google Form in which I asked readers of Free Technology for Teachers to vote for their favorite ed tech tools. At midnight last night I closed the survey and Google Forms compiled the results for me. Below are the tools that were the most popular in each category.

Video creation: 
iMovie for iPad (free with new iPads) won by a slight margin over Animoto and WeVideo.

Audio creation/ editing:
SoundCloud came out on top. That one surprised me a bit. It is also interesting to note that this is the category that received the fewest overall votes.

Creative Commons/ Public Domain Image Sources:
Flickr - The Commons took 26% of the votes while Photos for Class and Pixabay took 20% and 18% of the votes respectively.

Digital Portfolios:
Google Sites took this category in a landslide with 37% of the votes. The closest competitors were SeeSaw and Weebly which had a combined 36% of the votes.

Blog/ Website platform:
Blogger took this category with Google Sites and Weebly not too far behind.

Quiz / Formative Assessment Tools:
It wasn't much of a surprise to me that Kahoot was the top vote getter in this category. Everywhere I go people rave about how much they love Kahoot.

Teacher-Parent-Student Communication Apps:
Remind had nearly 50% of the votes and crushed the competition in this category.

Other/ Write-ins:
This was a space for folks to suggest tools that might not have fit in another category. In this section HSTRY was written more than any other tool. The comments in the form spoke to the versatility of HSTRY as folks wrote about using it as an assessment tool, a portfolio tool, and as a timeline tool.

The complete spreadsheet of results is available here.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Three Good and Free Options for Mobile Video Editing

One of the elements that is common to almost every video recorded on a mobile device is "throw away" footage at the beginning and end of every video. "Throw away" footage is the five seconds of giggling, shaky shots of the ground, and other nonsense that is captured at the beginning and end of a video. Your students can save time in the final editing of a video if they clip the "throw away" footage before they upload it to their desktop video editor of choice (iMovie, Movie Maker, Kdenlive). Here are three free tools that students can use to trim videos on their mobile devices.

Magisto is a free video editing app available for Android and iOS. The app allows you to add music tracks and some simple effects to your raw video footage. If you have a series of clips you can string them together in one video. To create your video you can use footage that you have captured with your device’s native app or you can use Magisto to capture new footage. In addition to editing the length of clips and stringing them together, Magisto allows you to draw on frames in your video clips and add borders to your frames.

Using the YouTube Capture app for iOS you can quickly record videos and upload them to YouTube with just a couple of taps on your screen. The first time that you open the app you will be prompted to sign into your Google account and choose your sharing settings. After that you’re ready to start recording and sharing videos. YouTube Capture includes a few options for quickly editing and enhancing your videos. Within YouTube Capture you can trim the length of your video, stabilize the images in your video, add a soundtrack to your video, and touch-up the colors in your video.

WeVideo for Android puts many of the same features of WeVideo's web-based video editing platform on your Android tablet or phone. Through the app you can capture pictures, sounds, and videos. You can use the app to trim raw video clips. The app also allows you to put together short audio slideshows.

Of course, if your students have purchased or your school has purchased apps like iMovie for iPad then you can just record directly into the app and trim all of your video clips there. iMovie costs $4.99 which is why I've left it off this list. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Guest Post - Look at the Camera and say "Think"

I think back on my own days in elementary and even high school and am disappointed by how little I actually remember, despite the fact i probably spent 75% of my time there from ages 5-18.  How could I have spent so much time in a place that I really did enjoy and feel successful but still have relatively little memory? Now, one of my top goals as a teacher is to make what happens in the classroom everyday a memorable learning experience.

No denying, drill and kill will most likely embed a skill into someones’ brain. It's how I learned most of my elementary math and spelling skills, for sure. My daughter, who really has the natural desire to get better at basketball, will shoot baskets outside for an hour everyday and I see her improving. The more we review what we want to learn, the more permanent it becomes in our brain and the more likely we are to find an opportunity to connect it to some other fact we know.  That is when the fact becomes part of our working knowledge.  “Drill and kill” really means reflecting, repeating and meta cognition.

Ok, great. I really want all that in my classroom but how do I get that without drill and kill?!  Here's my secret, I trick my students into reflecting.  

My students get excited to see and hear themselves, so I've made my camera my most essential piece of technology in my room. We take lots of pictures and video in class but I don't put it away for just an "end of year" wrap up. I use it daily and, suddenly, my students are eagerly wanting to examine these images, individually and as a class. They watch their own student produced videos for homework. They proudly watch it with their parents, maybe even siblings or grandparents. They start talking about what they’ve made and watched in their social interactions. (I’ve overheard the conversations!) Without even realizing, they've revisited their learning multiple times!

I use tools like Voicethread, fotobabble or Qwips to have the students do their own narration and captions, describing their thinking captured in the picture. Homework has changed from "answer the reflection questions 1-5, on pg 54" to "Narrate what was happening and what you were thinking about in these 5 pictures of you in class today."

I give opportunities with photoblogs made on Posterous to pose questions and comment on what's happening in the pictures of their peers. Class discussion goes deeper and the participation level skyrockets. The students who hesitate to raise their hand now have the opportunity to contribute.

It is almost too easy to use iMovie to create green screen movies.  They're honestly magical productions that let my students observe themselves being transported out of their everyday classroom  into ANY of the environments they're studying, without actually leaving the classroom.  It's like that great book series, The Magic Schoolbus, actually taking place within our four walls.

If you want to trick your students into reflecting too, you need a camera. Keep it on your desk. Never put it away. Teach your students how to use it, if they don't already know. Take pictures. Let the students take pictures. Take video. Carry it around as you collaborate with student groups. Document their learning. Make it personal. Capture their expression, their mood, their interactions. Then post it, create slide shows, albums, , montages, collages, scrapbooks, newsletters, YouTube channels, a website- whatever it takes! These are the annals of our learning, what ever form they take. All these images  we compile turn into "texts" that are so much more meaningful and memorable than the same old textbooks we pass out at the start of the year and then collect at the end to put back on the shelf, and wait, unchanged, for next years' class.

If a classroom is a place where it doesn't seem like a lot of pictures should be taken , then it makes me think memories are not being made. As a society, we treasure our photos of our most valued memories. We capture the important moments like birthdays, weddings, vacations, etc. gather them together to tell the story, keep them somewhere safe, and go back again and again to remind ourselves of that time. We owe it to our students to make their time in the classroom an event they want to capture, remember and revisit over and over again.

About the Guest Blogger
Alison Anderson is a proud Marquette University graduate and spent her teacher training years in the public and private schools of Milwaukee, WI. Since moving to Portland, OR to start her family, she has experienced different schools and  philosophies of education, like Reggie Emilia and Montessori as well as being involved in the more traditional forms. 

Someone once asked me who “Ted Rosececi” is, but, really, my twitter handle is @tedrosececi because my most important job is mothering 3 not-so-small children, Ted (14), Rose (12) and Cecilia -aka Ceci (9). After doing that full time for quite awhile, I have fought my way back to the teaching realm where I spend my day with the coolest bunch of 5th graders I've ever met. Together, we are bringing tech into the classroom and are each others' biggest supporters.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Here's a Good Digital Story Project

Silvia Tolisano who wrote the great Skype section of The Super Book of Web Tools for Educators recently had a great post on her blog that all elementary school teachers interested in digital storytelling should check out. In Creating a Techno-Tale in iMovie Silvia outlines and gives directions for using iMovie to record a book-style movie in which students use their voices to narrate the story. You can read and download all of the directions from Silvia's blog. The video introduction to the process is embedded below.

How To Guide- TechnoTales in iMovie from langwitches on Vimeo.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

JayCut to Add Drawing Tools & More Languages

I've been talking about JayCut quite a bit this year because I think that it is a great free alternative to iMovie and Movie Maker. In the next couple of weeks my special education students will be using it to edit Common Craft style videos. Recently, JayCut announced a couple of new features to be on the look-out for in the near future. JayCut will be introducing a drawing tool that will enable users to to draw on the images they upload to the editor. JayCut will also be introducing support for ten languages in addition to English.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Making Videos on the Web
How to Put a Video Editor on Your School's Website
How To Do 11 Techy Things In the New School Year

Thursday, August 5, 2010

iMovie Quickstart Guide from Story Chasers

Wesley Fryer, executive director of Story Chasers Inc and all-around great guy, has recently published a quickstart guide for using iMovie. The four page guide can be downloaded from Wes Fryer's blog, from Story Chasers, or from Scribd. The guide contains everything you need to know to get started and to publish your first video using iMovie.

Quickstart Guide to iMovie '09

Applications for Education
Wesley Fryer has graciously given permission to reuse the guide for your own professional development workshops provided that you give proper attribution to Story Chasers for the work. If your staff and students have access to iMovie and you're looking for a good reference to distribute to get them started making videos, this guide might be just what you need.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Free 33 Page Guide - Google for Teachers
Making Videos on the Web
How to Use YouTube's New Video Editor