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15 sec video
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What can you do with 15 seconds of video?

Often you will see people with video cameras taking pictures of still objects.  How many times have you stopped by the side of the road to take a look at some natural wonder or vista and noticed any number of people with their video cameras slowly panning back and forth taking movies of objects that donít move?  It is really not a good application of video to try and take stills of that format, it would be much better to use your digital camera (especially on panorama mode) to take a shot of that scene.  Different digital still cameras can take different amounts and kinds of video.  Some cameras can only take about 15 seconds while others can take up to a few minutes or more, depending on available memory.

What can you do with these short videos in education? 

 Consider science, an application could be for measuring simple harmonic motion, this could very easily be done by taking the students outside, putting a few on a swing set and then videoing a few complete oscillations, then repeating the video with people of different sizes, and swings of different amplitudes.  During playback start timing, and then step forward until the oscillation complete, and then calculate  the total time between the two events.
For a physical education class consider videoing a studentís swing or other motion.  Most actions take less than ten seconds to complete and it could be very beneficial to analyze or display proper motion to your students.  An added benefit of using the digital camera this why is that you donít need high speed cameras with expensive film, instead just a digital still camera with the ability to display frame by frame.     
In an art class the motion of a kinetic sculpture, or the motions involved in a dance.  A longer dance sequence could then be broken up into its component parts with short videos on each component.   For social studies, cultural behaviors, greeting, dances, and dress.  
Mathematics the assembly and disassembly of math blocks and their mathematical relationships or creating short video segments on how to program your graphic calculator, showing the order of which buttons get pushed and in what order.  Using the camera to take a video that could then be divided up into its component images and then analyzed, such as for population estimation.  Or as a lab activity to calculate or estimate the size and speed of an object.
In English class the students could use a video as a writing assignment, such as for descriptive writing about what is being displayed or creative writing about what will happen next, or a poem based on motion, such as birds in flight. Classic video of the motion of a falling cat, where we can see the behaviors of the cat and stop and examine any frame for the cat actions.  This video then could be looped to play repeatedly to allow the students to better observe the action or to act as writing focus, reminding them of what they are writing about and allowing for continuous observation while writing.  
Science lab, use the video to have students calculating the speed of an object as it moves across the screen.  This is done by placing markers either on the ground or in the background that are a known specific distance apart and then videoing a person or object as it moves across.  You could then extend this by focusing on a persons feet as they walk, so that students observe that while the body is in motion, the foot in contact with the ground has a relative motion of zero.  Falling objects lab, calculate acceleration rates. Conservation of momentum.
Meteorology, showing a plane going across the sky creating a contrail, versus one not creating a contrail and discussing the atmospheric effects that produce both situations.  Connect it up to a microscope and videoing the motion of a paramecium and the actions of the flagella, doing a lab to observe and record the motion of plants such as sensitive plant or a Venus fly trap.  Recording the results from a flame test.  A chemistry clock reaction. The behavior and motion of clouds.  All of these are short time video applications that would make excellent virtual labs.
An additional application could include documentation of behaviors, such as for a student IEP.  In this way behaviors, such as self stimming, could be documented and included as part of the IEP's goals.  
Additional Movies video/ants.MOV behavior of insects

video/clouds.MOV cloud observation

video/dune_erosion.MOV erosion patterns in sand

video/e_motor.MOV constructed electric motor

video/elv_train.MOV elevated train motion

video/frog.MOV frog calling behavior

video/gulls_front.MOV laughing gulls in flight - front

video/gulls_side.MOV laughing gulls in flight - side

video/plane.MOV airplane takeoff

video/shuttle_night.MOV space shuttle flight launch at night

video/spoonbill.MOV bird (spoonbill) behavior (touch feeding)

video/stem_2.MOV self stimulation behavior

video/waterflow.MOV water flowing


Digital cameras in education

© 2006 Drs.Cavanaugh