Week 5: VideoNot.es: A Blended Learning Tool Review

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There are a vast amount of tools for Blended and Fully Online Learning currently used by millions of teachers and students across the globe. In the sea of tools to use, there are basic tools, engagement tools, and building tools. Each of these kinds serves a purpose for what the teacher or professor needs to facilitate learning for the students. One tool in particular that stands out as a building tool is VideoNot.es

VideoNot.es offers a digital note taking space for students to use as they watch a video from Youtube or any other source. To use it, one must first create an account, then the screen is split in two, on the left, one copies and pastes the URL link to the video. It will upload and be ready to play in a matter of seconds. Once the video is ready, one can take notes on the first line on the right side of the screen. As the first note is typed, a timestamp gets saved when the note is created. When coming back to each note, the video plays back starting on that time.

While simplistic in nature, this tool is a powerful asset in the blended and fully online community because it allows students to take notes on the videos they are viewing without taking their eyes from the screen. Before this tool, one would have to pause every 2 minutes or so to write hand written notes or have a separate laptop, iPad, or desktop to type notes digitally. A clever student would split his screen into 2 windows and take notes digitally but it does not take away from the fact that pressing pause constantly makes the learning less fluid.

As I played with this tool, taking notes on a video about motivation, it became clear why this is a great find for blended learning, it automatically saves your thoughts as it also keeps track of the time when the note was written down. I would use this with all students because it allows them to keep notes of what they are learning about, and seeing that blended learning is in great part, videos and recorded lessons, these notes, which back up automatically to google drive, can be life savers.

Without this tool, my students would continue to take notes as they listen to and watch the video, pausing every now and then and losing track of what was being said.

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