While we’re at no shortage of videos these days, the bigger question is how to make the most of video clips for memorable video learning, no matter how long or short they are.
The exact prescription of what to do or how to do it depends on the clip of course, but this handful of tips will likely get your creative juices flowing.
Before you start, make sure you tell viewers why you’re showing them the video and what you want them to look for. You might suggest, for example, that they watch for good or bad examples of leadership, approaches to emulate or avoid, or the impact of words versus actions. Explain that you may watch a clip a couple of times to really analyze it.
As a first step, it’s often a good idea to watch a movie or video clip all the way through. Sometimes, you may opt to stop mid-way through the first viewing to ask, what will happen next? After the first viewing, a second watch can lend itself to some more pointed and richer discussion. During the second viewing, stop-and-start the video at particularly poignant moments, so you can discuss and analyze those different segments of the clip. Engage your group by asking about the impact of the dialogue on different listeners. You might find that different people interpret words or actions differently. Take time to discuss what was said and how it was interpreted.
The power of video is that it provides examples of different behaviors, both good and bad. Two simple questions that always yield loads of insights are: 1) What worked well? and 2) What would you do differently? Without creating any negativity, these questions allow viewers to analyze what they saw, imagine themselves in similar situations, and project forward alternative ways of approaching those challenges. To bring greater awareness to those ah-ha moments that will likely surface, record those ideas on a whiteboard, flipchart, or notepad.
After watching a video or movie clip, invite viewers to play out a scene the way they imagined it unfolding, or in a way they believe would achieve a better outcome. While it can be difficult to find that first participant to take the “hot seat,” you can encourage them by letting them know you or others will tap their shoulder (start-and-stop) to offer a suggestion or even swap seats.
Remember that the reason video clips work so well is that they engage learners and evoke emotions. The role of the facilitator is not to be the “sage on the stage,” but to let the video and the group do the work.
Videos can be incredibly engaging. However, like any good learning game, the true power of video learning comes in the discussion and debrief that follow. Using them as a teaching tool, and employing the 5 tips of Set Up, Start-Stop, Asking, Role play, and Facilitation, can make them even more memorable and effective.