3 Great Screencasting Tools to Use with Your Students

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One way to boost your distance teaching during (and post) this pandemic is through  creating and sharing screencasts and instruction videos with your students. In today's post we are sharing with you some of our favourite Chrome applications that you can use to record your screen and create instructional video materials to share with your students or embed in your virtual class.

Using these extension will enable you to create video tutorials, step-by step guides, video explainers, and many more. Depending on which of them you use, these applications differ on the kind of features they provide and also on how much you can do with their free versions. However, for better screencasts and educational how-to videos we recommend that you choose a service that allows you to: include your webcam in the recording, integrate voice-overs or narrate using your voice,  access annotation tools (eg. add text, circles, draw, doodle, etc). Here are our recommendations:

1- Screencastify

If there is one tool that we recommend the most it is this one. Screencastify is absolutely an excellent screen video recorder that allows you to record screencasts from your desktop, browser tab or webcam capture. It also lets you include your audio recording to go along the recording. Other supported features include the ability to edit and annotate your videos (crop, trim, merge, add text, draw on your tab with a pen, etc). Once your screencast is ready you can share it to Google Drive, publish it to Youtube, share it to Google Classroom, export it as MP4 or animated GIF or MP3.

2- Loom

This one offers free access to premium features to teachers and schools. Loom allows you to" record your screen, voice, and face to create an instantly shareable video". Some of its features include:

  • "Easily record anything on your screen, even if it's outside of Chrome
  • Trim sections to make your video even more impactful, add CTA's to drive engagement, and see who's watched your video
  • Embed Looms in Slack, Gmail, Notion, Coda, Intercom, and Headway
  • The Basic plan comes with everything you need to record and share quick videos for free. Loom Pro is free to all teachers and students at K-12 schools, universities or educational institutions who are using Loom for classroom work."

3- Hippo Video

Another Chrome tool to record your screen. It offers the following features:

  • "Use your webcam or front-facing camera to record the video
  • Screen capture of tab, window or the entire desktop
  • Record video using both your webcam and screen capture at the same time
  • Use edit options like Trim, Crop, add Call-outs, Emojis, and Tags
  • Blur or mask a part of your screen to hide any confidential info
  • Stitch and join clips with ‘Hippo Video's Editor’ - to tell your stories in a wholesome manner
  • Add ‘Intro’ and ‘End’ cards to create personalized stories
  • Invite your colleagues to Hippo video and collaborate as a team to create hassle-free visual presentations
  • Assign roles and permissions to your team members easily."

4- Vidyard

This screen and webcam recording tool offers you the following features:
  • "Create and upload unlimited videos for free!
  • See who's viewed your video (when shared through Gmail)
  • Share your Vidyard video to YouTube (no downloading or reuploading required)
  • Embed videos on your website (and never deal with ads)
  • Create individual video-sharing pages for every video
  • Record up to 1 hour per video
  • Continue recording, even if you lose connection
  • HD quality recording included for free
  • Create animated (GIF) thumbnails
  • Simple editing functions".