What it is: Popcorn Maker is a super cool site that I learned about from Michael Zimmer’s blog, The Pursuit of Technology Integration Happiness. Popcorn Maker is an online video mashup tool that makes it easy to integrate several different forms of online media into a video. A clip from YouTube can be enhanced with article clips, images, text, audio, maps, other live feeds and social media content. Add some “bling” to any video clip…interactive is better! Videos can be mashed without logging in. Creating a user profile let’s you save and share the finished project.
How to integrate Popcorn Maker into the classroom: Popcorn Maker is a great way to enhance videos. Teachers can use Popcorn Maker to mashup media for students to engage with. This could be adding a map to an historical video so that students can better visualize where an event is taking place, adding a wikipedia article to expand on an idea that a video touches on, adding a live social media feed with student comments as a “backchannel” video, etc. This type of use is great for expanding on Kahn academy type instructional videos (which can be a bit boring/dry), educational videos, etc. Wouldn’t it be great to have a real-life example pop up during a Kahn academy instructional video? Students can connect number sense and computation. (What a novel concept!) For young students, create a video with embedded directions (audio or text) and next steps for learning. This would make for a great learning center for completing a science experiment, multi-step directions, or next steps of learning.
Students can use Popcorn Maker to enhance videos that they have created, to further expand on an idea, to help explain a researched topic to the rest of the class, or to share reflections on a video with others. Because students can add text, it is easy for them to add their “blogged” reflections directly in a video to be shared with others. So often our students start their research with a video search. Ask them to create a mashup of all of their research using Popcorn Maker. This will help them to dig beyond the video for other relevant content that adds to their understanding.
In the “flipped” classroom, Popcorn Maker takes the videos to the next level. Popcorn Maker could be a great way to help apprentice students in the art of learning. Students can see the way that connections are made among different media types and are led through how to think and expand on an interesting topic. After students have viewed a few mashups, ask them to create their own. This could be really helpful in discovering misunderstandings in learning, gaps in the way research is being completed, or difficulties in making connections.
Tips: The tutorial on the first page is really useful. I recommend it before beginning a project!
Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Popcorn Maker in your classroom.