Kevin Honeycutt has published an updated YouTube version of his wonderful song, “I Need My Teachers To Learn.” Instead of using video for the b-roll footage, his friend Rae helped him use still images synchronized to the music. It’s just over three minutes long, take some time today and check it out:

In many ways I think this video is an improvement over the original version which was posted in August 2009 and now has over 10,000 YouTube views. When I blogged about it originally I noted:

The song was written by Kevin Honeycutt of ESSDACK, and Charlie Mahoney from Turning Point Learning Center (TPLC) helped with percussion as well as some Garageband vocal adjustments to make him sound even more awesome! The video was shot and produced by Shawn Gormley, a friend of Kevin’s.

This latest version is published on Kevin’s own YouTube channel (to which I’d recommend subscribing) instead of the changingworldbyfilm channel. (I have no idea who owns that one.) From a digital footprint standpoint, this is a good thing for Kevin I think.

Static images synchronized to narration and/or music can be just as powerful as moving video. We take this approach as Storychasers in the Celebrate Oklahoma Voices oral history project. From visual literacy and attention economy perspectives, I think it is very important we pay attention to the images with which we synchronize our ideas in digital stories. At several points in the original video, I found myself wanting more variety in the presented images, and more direct relevancy to the lyrics of the song.

In this 2.0 version of the video, Quang Minh (YILKA)’s Flickr image “How many non-Mac are there” is used several times. Several other images are repeated as well. While I think this 2.0 version is an improvement, a 2.1 version could be even better by avoiding repeated images altogether and using other fresh, new images in each verse. Of course this takes time, and we all have a limited amount of it… So I am not offering this as a criticism to Kevin and Rae but rather as a suggestion for future versions as an aspiring digital storyteller myself.

Attribution of image sources is also very important, and this is another area the video could improve on. My 12 year old just completed his first oral history video documentary over the holidays (we burned the DVD version last night, in fact, for him to turn in during class today) and image attribution was something we talked about and worked on together. This can be a pain, it is time consuming, but it is also important. It’s vital we model respect for copyright and intellectual property in published videos like this, and to do that one of the best ideas is to start with copyright-friendly image sources. Joyce Valenza shared some great image source links in her “Getting Started” strand keynote for K12Online09, “The Wizard of Apps.”

If you haven’t seen Joyce’s K12Online09 presentation, set aside 50 minutes in the next few weeks and DO IT. I challenge you to find and share a more creative and helpful online presentation about the practical ways learners can digitally collaborate in constructive and legally respectful ways online!

Kudos to Kevin and Rae for creating and sharing this “2.0 version” of Kevin’s song. I will definitely be sharing this with educator audiences in 2010 at conferences where I have an opportunity to present and share. :-)


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