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« The Language Show 2006 | Main | TES ICT Blog: How to use Skype to help with language lessons »

08/11/2006

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As in favour as I am about new technology in the classroom, I am in favour of blocking sites like YouTube in schools. The ability to record video and subsequently broadcast it across a network is surely sufficient and will serve the same aim. Students at my school have been known to waste away time on these video sites, and the material that is available to them is not always appropriate in a school. Opponents may argue that they can easily access these same sites from home, but as schools we have a public responsibility to maintain. The Becta website has some useful guidelines on the uses of mobile technology in schools. If you don't already have it Joe, I can email you the link.

Hi Alex,

Thank you for your comment. I've just found this link to advice on using mobile phones in school which has been produced by Becta:
http://schools.becta.org.uk/index.php?section=te&catcode=as_mob_hh_03&rid=9954&pagenum=1&NextStart=1

I agree that there is clearly a problem with any video site which contains some risqué material if it is going to be used in school.

There is a site however called 'Embed the video' which means you can run a video from your own blog or website as long as you have enough storage space to host it. Here is the link:

http://embedthevideo.com/

Read point 2 of this post for more explanation about Embed the video:
http://www.sandaigprimary.co.uk/pivot/pivot/entry.php?id=1031&w=john_johnston

I think that there is also a lot of potential on sites such as YouTube and we need to model responsible use with pupils. In fact I don't want all of YouTube unblocked, but think it should be possible to unblock pages we want to use - and as professionals we're not going to show anything unsuitable.

Problem with blocking YouTube is that there are loads of other sites which do the same thing which aren't blocked.

I also discovered something interesting the other week. I was trying to describe a video to a class and they said, "You can show us Miss, you can override the school system" and they were right. Turns out there are hundreds of sites which advertise themselves on the basis of accessing blocked materials in school. The school is now blocking these as soon as they find them, but I bet there are hundreds more!

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