Creating your own classroom Khan Academy

How to set up and use a USB camera for collaborative student work.

I have been been referring parents and students to sites like Khan Academy and resource sites for years to assist them in reviewing or learning content associated with their classroom lessons.  I have now been encouraging teachers to create their own content and version of Khan Academy and store it in the cloud for parents and students to access.  I have found that if students create and view videos of students they know or of videos they are in, they are far more likely to watch it multiple times and share it with family as an enjoyable experience along with supporting learning at home.

Having students create videos of their work in class station rotations that demonstrates their understanding and then shares it with their peers is a great way to access higher orders of thinking. In this model students would create videos using simple Chrome OS tools and then can collectively comment and amend understandings while providing feedback to students. To do this you will need any USB web camera or a Chromebook with a camera. Have the students access the Chrome Application/Extension Screencastify to save the video to their Google Cloud Drive. The teacher would then make the video available to students to comment on using VideoNotes. Creating videos is also a great way to memorialize a student’s thinking process for complex equations to be able to easily identify any misconceptions and also provides for creating student created video libraries if well done for all students to access. Use Videostream and Chromecast to easily project your student videos onto your classroom Digital Whiteboard.

Linked are two of the cameras that I use to capture student and teacher interactions as an administrator.  The LifeCam seems to produce a higher definition image/sound and can be mounded on a standard camera mount where the HUE offers greater versatility in the classroom inclusive of being used as an inexpensive document camera on a self supporting stand and is Mac friendly.  Both are great cameras.

Chrome OS Accommodation Applications and Extensions:




Collection of Chrome OS applications and extensions that support student access including voice recognition software, text to voice, distraction free writing space, online reader to support fluency for dyslexics, typing application and Fluency Tutor for students to practice fluency at home to be evaluated by teachers later.


Type with your voice. Sayit turns your Google Chrome into a speech recognition app. You can use your Google Chrome browser as a voice recognition app and type long documents, emails and essays without touching the keyboard. The app is integrated with Dropbox and Google Drive so you can easily export you transcribed text to your various online accounts. Or your can send the text to any email address.


A customizable, offline, and full-screen text-editor. Write Space is a customizable full-screen text-editor that lives in your web-browser. It is designed to minimize the distractions that come between you and your writing.


Too long didn’t read? Let TLDR shorten it.

TLDR (Too Long Didn’t Read)  Plugin is a free extension that creates a summary of any web article without leaving the original page.  Works great for PDF documents too!


BeeLine’s color gradient makes reading faster/easier for over 90% of people. How much will it help you?

Have a lot to read?  Make reading easier and faster using BeeLine Reader!  BeeLine uses a color gradient to guide your eyes from the end of one line to the beginning of the next.  This seemingly simple tweak makes reading substantially easier and faster because it allows you to transition between lines quickly and effortlessly.  Thousands of people have taken our online diagnostic test, and over 90% of them saw a benefit from BeeLine.  Many people are able to read 20% or 30% faster with BeeLine, even on their first try.


Tired of reading? Select text you want to read and listen to it. SpeakIt converts text into speech so you no longer need to read.

SpeakIt reads selected text using Text-to-Speech technology with language auto-detection. It can read text in more than 50 languages.


Fluency Tutor™ for Google is an easy-to-use reading and assessment tool that helps busy teachers support struggling readers.

Great for time-stretched teachers, Fluency Tutor™ for Google lets students practice reading aloud at their own pace.

Make reading aloud more fun and satisfying for even your most reluctant students. It’s also great for early readers and individuals learning English as a second language.

This easy-to-use app takes pressure off teachers having to listen to every student read in a busy classroom, where they can feel self-conscious.


Allows students to open reading passages through Google Drive

This web-based program allows students to open Fluency Tutor™ for Google reading passages in Google Drive. Must be used with reading passages assigned through the Fluency Tutor™ for Google App (available separately in the Chrome Web Store).


Master touch typing using this free game / educational program. This online program will assist you with learning and improving…

Master touch typing using this free game / educational program. This online program will assist you with learning and improving your typing speed!

Practice each lesson over and over to at least get all three stars. It really doesn’t take much to learn touch typing, a few minutes a day for one to two weeks and you will be a pro!