I created Swick’s Classroom, my YouTube channel, as an answer for a non-musical substitute throughout my four-week paternity go away in 2018.
The unique video needed to cowl all of the musical particulars whereas holding a quick tempo to stop undesirable bored behaviors. I ended up making a point-of-view xylophone video so college students may see a big xylophone on the sensible board whereas they realized a tune. That video was posted three years in the past and has greater than 10,000 views!
At the moment, my district, Clark County Faculty District, had not but tailored Google, so sharing paperwork and digital video classes with a substitute was troublesome as a result of all information have been password protected. I used to be left with two choices: belief a stranger with my work login credentials or add my lesson to YouTube for all to see. Each felt dangerous on the time, however I do know I made the precise choice.
Though I by no means supposed for my video classes for use by others — most of my doubt coming from imposter syndrome — I used to be over-the-moon excited when my first Swick’s Classroom video hit 50 views. I assumed to myself, “Wow, I helped 50 lecturers!” I didn’t fairly perceive how views labored then, however that pleasure is what drove me to make the subsequent video.
I made my first eight Swick’s Classroom movies utilizing my cellphone and an inexpensive video-editing software program meant for making household house movies. I began watching YouTube tutorials about each software program obtainable, and I bought probably the most user-friendly.
I purchased a tripod for my cellphone and a inexperienced blanket so I may report devices and take away the background on the pc. That was all I wanted to make a majority of my instrument lesson movies.
Your cellphone is probably the most highly effective instrument in your arsenal. I wouldn’t purchase something costly till the content material begins paying for it. Apple computer systems include iMovie and GarageBand. Home windows customers can obtain DaVinci Resolve and Audacity without spending a dime. I didn’t make any cash from my content material for 2 years, and it pressured me to get artistic with how I make content material but in addition made me take note of what college students like in regards to the movies.
I finally realized the Adobe Artistic Cloud applications — the trade commonplace — so I may animate my very own movies, which remains to be a piece in progress. As I gained confidence in my content material, the aim grew to become to someday earn cash from the teachings in order that I may improve my setup and create movies extra effectively.
I consider the aim of each instructional video is to supply an expertise that the trainer couldn’t present by educating the category straight. The only high quality to good is the pacing. Reside instruction is consistently interrupted by questions, rest room breaks, transitions, and so forth. Movies are a set tempo that liberate the classroom trainer to work independently from the lesson. The trainer is ready to excuse college students, get the Band Assist, help with the project and tie sneakers with out the pacing struggling.
You don’t want 4K fancy results, you solely want a purposeful lesson with obtainable objectives.
Pre-COVID, college students cherished the digital classes as a result of they might proceed the teachings at house, memorize lyrics and even attempt to play melodies on their devices. Mother and father commented that their youngsters would put the music lesson on the TV for everybody to observe. Dads would jokingly sing this week’s tune to me at drop off. YouTube offered an unlimited accessibility that the majority dad and mom enable of their home.
Throughout COVID, YouTube and recorded classes have been the saving grace for asynchronous college students that had restricted web entry. Sure, faculties adopted web sites like Canvas and Google Classroom, however I discovered my content material was restricted by file measurement and high quality. I used to be solely capable of have one 20-minute lesson posted at a time resulting from capability limitations. The choice was to put up a vast quantity of high-quality movies on YouTube and embed them into my classroom pages.
When our college returned to in-person instruction, dad and mom and college students have been each saying “Look, it’s the music trainer from YouTube!”
Organized Like a Locker
If I may begin over, I undoubtedly would manage it higher as a result of my channel lacks each a content material plan and a posting schedule! I’ve handled my YouTube channel like a locker for issues that I want proper now.
I solely create content material that I wish to use in my class within the quick future — for instance, I want a video right this moment for my kindergarten class to sing at an ocean-themed guardian night time, and I want a boomwhacker video tomorrow for my fifth graders. Due to this, there are not any clear patterns in my content material. And, much like a library, if a video can’t be discovered, it would by no means be considered.
My movies vary from foolish songs to xylophone tutorials to boomwhacker play-alongs to vlogging. I might need somebody subscribe as a result of they love a boomwhacker video however then the subsequent 5 movies I put up usually are not about boomwhackers.
If I may begin over proper now, I might create a singular channel for every of the totally different classes that lecturers need. I see different channels which can be 100% rhythm play-alongs, and they’re profitable as a result of subscribers know what they’re going to get when the subsequent video is posted. Sadly, my subscribers don’t know in the event that they’re going to get a rant about COVID security or a ukulele tutorial.
The unique idea of the YouTube channel was purely to assist my substitute discover a video of me educating quicker and simpler than the offered strategies on the time. Going ahead, I hope to create content material that helps lecturers get their college students enthusiastic about music class. I spend summers taking a look at views, feedback and information to know what the remainder of the world desires extra of content-wise from Swick’s Classroom.
Seeing the views go up on a brand new and even an outdated lesson provides me a way of gratification that I can’t get anyplace else. I actually benefit from the current vlogging as a result of lecturers must know that they aren’t the one professionals experiencing this period of COVID music schooling. I obtained a remark that stated, “I wanted to listen to this,” which was all I wanted to know that it was time properly spent.
I used to be excited to assist 50 lecturers with their sub plans when this factor began, and now the channel is approaching 1 million views! I hope to curate the channel right through my retirement and luxuriate in understanding my classes are nonetheless getting used someplace.