Soapbox is an easy-to-use, yet robust extension that allows you to create a screencast where you share the screen with what you’re doing on your desktop. When you’re done recording, you can toggle between your image full-screen, your desktop full-screen, or a split screen. Try creating one for a project or paper introduction and keep it on your Google Classroom page for people who were absent or who want to hear the instructions again!
There are quite a few screencasting apps and extensions out there, but they have a learning curve that may be a turnoff. Loom is a simple-to-use Chrome extension that allows you to record your screen as you explain whatever you’re looking at. You can choose to be on camera in a little circle at the bottom of the page, or you can be invisible. Imagine how many uses there are for Loom in the classroom – to explain an assignment for your students, to ask questions about a document in your PLT, etc. etc. The finished product can either be shared as a link, or the video can be downloaded as a file to upload to YouTube or any other website. To read about two other screencasting apps, click here.
I normally use Screencast-O-Matic to make screencasts (see the one I made on organizing your bookmarks bar in your Chrome browser, and there’s also a series on working with Google Docs – try this one about how to use voice comments with Google Docs!), but last week I branched out and tried Nimbus. With Nimbus, you can screenshot (the whole page? a portion of the page? whatever you want!), or you can make a quick screencast…either with sounds or without. I made the screencast from the last entry using Nimbus, just to practice…and it took me about five minutes to figure out.