Monday, December 17, 2012

Making YouTube Safer for Teachers


This year, I returned to the classroom, so my focus has shifted from the consulting side more to the day-to-day practical stuff teachers face.
I've recently discovered a couple of helpful tools for those occasions when you want to share a YouTube video with your students.
Sometimes YouTube has some really good content you want to share. However, the structure of the YouTube website means that that good content gets surrounded by content that is very often NOT good.
If you go to http://www.safeshare.tv and paste in a YouTube link, it will give you a new link to share the YouTube video without any comments, related videos, etc. If you have a class website, you can link to SafeShare and not worry about inappropriate surprises.
When I want to show a video on YouTube (or another website) in the classroom, I usually don't take a chance with network conditions; rather than streaming the video, I like to download it ahead of time. The best tool I've found for that is a browser called Torch. Not only is it really easy to download videos (just click the Media button) but the quality is better than other YouTube download utilities I've tried. Get it at http://www.torchbrowser.com

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