Anyone Else Notice This?

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10 thoughts on “Anyone Else Notice This?”

  1. I believe a couple of things. I believe your experience was true. I, also, believe that another eye (video camera or experienced observer) is going to see things we can’t/don’t see. The human mind can only do so much. It can really only attend to one thing at a time–much to my chagrin. The question, to me, is NOT which one is true, but what “new” information the “other eye” might give us to improve our instruction.

    Examples: Even when we believe we’re going slowly enough, it’s probably still too fast for many. OR I believe I am getting excellent attention from all, but the “observer” sees kids off task and fooling around quietly and secretively. OR I know, from the animated faces and eager answers, that everyone is on board and is understanding, but the video eye shows that I haven’t done enough comprehension checks and the truth is that several kids are tuned out and the class is “flatter” in affect than I thought. Does any of this mean that my assessment was wrong? No, I believe it just means that any ONE person’s or tool’s assessment (including an administrator evaluating you/me) is limited. I hope this makes sense.

    I see the value in video. It’s not the same as live. There is no “one” experience. It is slightly to greatly different for everyone in the room. That’s why evaluation is so difficult.

  2. Perfectly said again, Jody. I get it. I conclude, just my own conclusion of course, that the medium of video is valuable more for the mechanical than the artistic part of what we do. I made my DVD set with that in mind – it captures the three steps and other details, but it sure doesn’t capture any of the subtlety.

    Thank you Jody. Now, if we can just leave our egos at the door, we can make the video piece work here this year. We’ll see. It may be that live training and coaching are going to be the only real way to lay it all out and get deep into it. But that really is a complete answer to the question.

    1. I have been eagerly watching every TPRS video I can find or afford and in the absence of direct observation and coaching it is an invaluable tool for us beginners. So I vote for lots of video!

  3. And I have lots of video but need to find the time to edit it and do the director’s cut thing. I want to offer both versions bc many teachers have said that they want both. It just strikes me when I look at them how unlike the real classes they are. But I will do it, just need to find the time. Anybody who wants to take the risk and send in stuff pls. do so as well. I honestly believe that our trust in this group is strong enough for this work with video. We know the limitations of video and we can use that knowledge to further embrace its use. As long as everyone gets their bio in (hint). And I know that there are many bios in the queue so I will get to those asap as well. Nothing like a lazy last few weeks of the summer to get ready for another year in the trenches right next to my fellow trenchaholics, right?

  4. leigh anne munoz


    I watched a DVD of Blaine Ray, (who is superb in person). I could not get through 1 minute of it. It’s the magical live performance vs a non-magical, 2-dimensional representation of a magical live performance.

    Just my .02. 🙂

    1. I agree with you, leigh anne. When I was hired at a TPRS district, I knew very little about the method. Watching the Blaine Ray video I was given convinced me that the method was tedious and ridiculous. But seeing the method come alive in my classroom–and in a colleague’s classroom–made everything “click” for me, made me realize that this method was what I’d be searching for without even realizing it. But video–it was dead.

  5. sabrina janczak

    I was there. There was magic in the air, the audience was electrified and so was I.
    As I observe the video, I don t feel the magic, it is gone. Some things belong to the sphere of mystery and divine, cannot be captured, and we should just accept it.

  6. It is a great point. I felt that quality in the air as we worked – lots of joy – but didn’t see/feel it in the video. I like your suggestion that a machine, a thing that processes electricity, cannot capture the qualities that accompany real human interaction.

    Here is the Krahen idea that robots don’t converse expressed for maybe the 20th time in this space, but this time I get it a little more. Machines are not made to capture the higher invisible qualities that lend true nobility to the human experience. (Think of Blaise Pascal on that last point.) “Only humans can share human things”would be a corollary of “robots don’t converse”.

    And when video fails to bring the good stuff that we thought was there, we should know that and interpret what we see accordingly. Again, what Jody wrote about this is the real deal. Hers is another comment made into an article. I’ll do that now.

  7. Adrianne Bradley

    I suppose video removes the “personalized” feel. There is no involvement on my part as I watch. I’m just an observer. It also removes the “possibilities”. In person, I can give one cute answer that can bring the story to life. When I watch, its someone else’s story. As long as everyone keeps this in mind, I might be willing to film myself and send it in for a bit of constructive criticism from the group. 🙂

  8. Oh yeah I don’t think anybody in this group at this point is thinking they are going to look like superstars if they send in film. We definitely have reached a point in this discussion about the use of video, which has been going on and off for over a year now here, that we understand and agree that we can use it to do some mechanical tuning and that is about it. So send it, Adrianne, and others who might want some mechanical tuning up. If I post anything, if I can get to that editing of so much tape I have waiting to be used, I also post it in the spirit of shared coaching that must drive all use of video in this space. When I worked with Bernard Wed. nite at NTPRS, he only needed one or two adjustments to improve greatly. That is the kind of thing we are wanting to get via the use of video here, leaving our egos at the door.

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