A video clip is a combination of visual and audio clues, so they are effective in language learning because they convey authentic emotion, ideas, and opinions through both words and gestures. Our understanding of a situation comes from being able to interpret these visual and audio clues.
If we use visual materials in EFL classes, we should use them for learning purposes. In other words, we need to identify learning aims and create tasks or activities to meet these aims. If not, students can watch the clips in their own time.
These days, it’s much easier to access video clips to use in EFL classes. YouTube is a wonderful resource for language learners. Most clips are short (2-3 mins) so students won’t feel as if they are wasting time watching them, and we can have different tasks for each viewing.y in teaching
For example, we can play the clip once to set the context and play it a second time to analyze features of language or answer a set of comprehension questions. We can play it a third time to check the answers to the questions.
Therefore, it is a good idea to use video clips in EFL classes as long as you remember to:
- Watch the clip before you show it to your students.
- Give students a clear reason for watching.
- Set the context.
- Consider pre-teaching the key language items.
Here are ten activities for using a video clip in EFL classes:
- Turn the sound off and get students to describe the images.
- Pause and ask students to discuss what they have just watched.
- Pause and get students to discuss what they think will happen next.
- Minimize the screen so students only hear the clip. Ask questions about where they think it’s taking place, what they think the speakers are doing etc.
- Set the scene and then set some pre comprehension questions on the board. Next, students watch the clip to answer the questions. After that, they watch the clip a second time to check the answers.
- Turn the audio off and get students to watch the clip and create the dialogue.
- Choose a very short clip, play it once and ask students to jot down key words. Then, they compare their findings, play it again and they write down more words they hear, compare in pairs, play it a third time and they should be able to reconstruct the text with the vocabulary they wrote down and their understanding of grammar structures.
- Watch the clip and get students to discuss how they think the characters are feeling or thinking about.
- Use a clip with lots of movement and get the students to describe what the characters are doing.
- Divide the class into two groups and assign a different clip to watch at home for each group. In EFL class, ask them to describe their clip to their partners in an information-gap activity.
Vary your activities on the video materials and listen to the feedback from your students about the clips you used and the way you used it.