I know I’m lucky when it comes to school districts blocking YouTube. Mine doesn’t, and as a result, a number of teachers in my building are able to use videos from the site as part of our teaching. But I have to admit that while I do make sure anything I use is appropriate, I hate all of the side links to other videos and content. From a design standpoint, a YouTube page is a mess. From a teaching standpoint, I want my students focused on the video. There are an increasing number of programs that help reduce the clutter on a video page, but I happen to like Quiet Tube. It’s simple to use: you drag the Quiet Tube tab to your browser and then anytime you have a video that has extraneous material, just click on the Quiet Tube tab, and your browser will bring you to a page with mostly white space (or a black background, if you prefer) and your video. No distractions.
Use in the Classroom
Perhaps sites like Quiet Tube might convince more administrators and technology coordinators that teachers can responsibly share videos from sites like YouTube in the classroom. The growing number of resources at these sites make Quiet Tube a valuable tool for learning. Quiet Tube is better for a teacher showing a video to entire class than individual students watching on their own, however.