Flipping Your Class with Clips
At first glance, Apple’s new video app CLIPS is a great way for anyone to create fancy social media videos. CLIPS, however, is also a creative classroom tool that can transform the way kids learn. Welcome to the first in a series of posts on CLIPS.
WHAT IS CLIPS?
CLIPS is a free iOS app for updated iPads and iPhones that supports 36 languages. The app has a number of fun features, particularly the “Live Titles” tool that turns your words into captions.
You can use videos and photos from your photo library, capture live video, and change the order (or delete them) by tapping and dragging them in the timeline at the bottom of the screen.
Here is how it works:
When you launch the app it opens to the front-facing camera. You can change between camera views by tapping the camera icon and mute or enable audio using the mic icon.
You will see icons at the top of the screen, these are (from left to right): Live Titles, Filters, Overlays, Posters, and Music.
To work Clips you must press and hold the red record button. You can also hold the record button and swipe left to lock the record. A lock symbol will appear. This is useful for complicated or longer shots.
By clicking the “Titles” icon and pressing the red bar, you can see your words appear on screen as you speak. CLIPS must have an internet connection for this to work. You can also tap the mic icon to mute your voice; the caption will still appear but your voice won’t be recorded.
There are a number of filters, but students seem to like the Ink and Comic Book filters. You apply these to each clip you want to use.
You can select multiple text bubbles and shapes that you can drag wherever you like on the screen. To erase an overlay tap the sticker or emoji you used and then tap the “X” to delete it.
There are are a number of title and credit cards, from simple to flashy. To change the text just tap on it and type what you want to say. When ready, record the clip by holding the red record button.
Tap this and you can select from Apple’s own soundtracks or use your own music. Whatever music you do use will automatically work to the length of your clip.
Your CLIP S will appear in a small timeline at the bottom of the screen. By clicking a clip you can apply filters and other effects, mute or enable the volume, delete it, or edit its length. To edit the length tap the scissors tool. By pinching your photo or video you can zoom in and out, and you can use the end bars to adjust the length of time a photo is used within a clip.
As we know in teaching, the power comes when a piece is published. Share the clips using the Share button. You can share your Clip with your contacts using Messages, or through your choice of social network, including YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo and Instagram.
CLIPS IN THE CLASSROOM SERIES
During this series, I plan to cover such topics as student engagement with CLIPS, and project ideas for CLIPS. For our first post, however, I would love to write about how easy it is for a teacher to create flipped videos using CLIPS, the latest addition to the Apple film arsenal.
If you are in my class, you know that you are going to be assigned a video to watch for homework. These videos are not just random videos collected from the internet. The videos are carefully crafted lessons created by me, each thoughtfully scripted, animated and edited. Some of these videos have taken up to a week to film. My colleagues are always amazed, in awe of the time that I invest in some of these video projects. Like I tell them, the time invested in each video has a huge payoff, as many of them can be used school year after school year. Still, so many of my colleagues are turned off by how long a video can take to make, and with the fast-paced environment of so many of our classes, it is understandable that there are other tasks that a teacher needs to focus on. Well, CLIPS is a game changer when it comes to creating flipped videos. A teacher can now create a fun animated video in minutes, and, with a little bit of extra effort, can create a short flipped video that will wow and engages his or her students.
Your first flipped CLIPS:
So, how can a teacher create a flipped video for his or her classroom? Well, it is easier than you think. Let’s start with a basic project, using the features outlined at the beginning of this post to turn a simple worksheet into a set of video instructions.
First, and it really is the most important step, write your script. With CLIPS I like to keep it simple. Limit yourself to no more than a page, and, if possible, stay at a half page. The great part of CLIPS is that you can create quick, digestible videos. There are is other software such as Camtasia that are perfect for longer videos, but CLIPS is perfect for…well.. clips!
Next, create a worksheet on google docs and do a screen capture. CLIPS can access any image in your camera role. If you have the iOS 11 update, you can now even annotate these screenshots before you import them into CLIPS. For the purposes of this post, I created an example that used a number of screen caps from Google Classroom, Youtube, and Google Docs. In my ELA class, I teach students how to write creatively by creating movie scripts. Before a student creates a script, he or she must provide the story version of his or her idea or a “Treatment.” Students must also be able to describe their story in one line, what in the film industry is called a “Logline.” This lesson is one of my most important lessons of the year, so the following CLIPS walks the students through a major homework assignment that they must complete before we even start talking about Treatments and Loglines.
Video Link: https://youtu.be/GUmqZFKgxCg
This sample video took a total of 15 minutes to create. So how did I do it?
Create your title cards and add overlays. Plug in your headphones with the built-in mic, press the red button and narrate your clip. Next, import your images into CLIPS.
Remember, you can pinch, zoom, and pan to different areas of your picture. Again, lock the record bar by swiping left, and walk your student’s through the worksheets by manipulating the images. Add animations, word bubbles, shapes and arrows to highlight important details. And, turn on the text to speech feature so that students can read along. In fact, sometimes I find it fun to mute my voice and tell the story through subtitles. A fun video with awesome music and subtitles can sometimes be the perfect teaching tool. Either way, having the option to add subtitles is an excellent accessibility tool.
After each narration, open the editing feature and tap the circle with three lines to edit your narration. Honestly, editing my text takes the most time. If you are like me, you might be a stickler for punctuation. You will save time building your video by not using the text to speech, but again, this investment in time will make your video much more accessible for students of all learning styles.
Add each clip, making sure to narrate the story. When you are done, be ready for what can sometimes be the most time-consuming part of all, choosing the music! CLIPS has such an awesome collection of music, and you can’t help but get carried away. Each song automatically adjusts to fit your video. You will be in awe of how perfectly the rhythms line up! And when you have mastered all of these skills, you can teach your students to create their own educational CLIPS.
Additionally, with the new Screen Record feature in iOS11, you can now use the control center to quickly record your iPad or iPhone screen. Once enabled, you can select apps, walk students through a process, and model desired behaviors and best practices. These videos are added to the Photo Library and can be quickly added to CLIPS. Although this can allow you to quickly create videos that are ready to be narrated, you must remember that the CLIPS format is square, and you sometimes need to zoom in and manipulate a video you are importing to the app. Also, learning to add overlays to particular parts of a video can take some practice. When creating your beginning videos, screencaps may help to create the quickest projects until you have mastered the art of importing screen recordings.
Why It Is Worth The Time!
As I said before, many teachers are intimidated by the time it takes to edit a flipped video, but, the fact is, once you have created your video you have it for years to come. Furthermore, as you hone and master your CLIPS editing skills, you will eventually be able to pass those skills onto your students. This time upfront practicing CLIPS and preparing flipped videos has a huge pay off in future school years, and the students are the ultimate winners. By having videos that prepare them for lectures, engage and entertain them, reinforce instructions, and highlight key concepts, our students are being set up for success. They are becoming 21st-century learners, with the opportunity to critically think both in and out of the classroom, and they will have the CLIPS to prove it!
Explore more with the Everyone Can Create curriculum from Apple EDU