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Peer Review

The Teaching Channel

by Alan Arkatov


Overall Numeric Rating:

5 stars
Content Quality: 5 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 5 stars
Reviewed: Mar 04, 2013 by Teacher Education
Overview: The Teaching Channel is a website that contains information on all aspects of teaching in the K-12 setting. It is applicable to teachers, administrators, coaches, support staff, and student teachers. Included in the website are links to videos that are categorized by subject, grade level, and roles. There is also a link to a blog with information shared by the Tch staff as well as a link to a weekly newsletter. One can also access links to view episodes of the weekly show, Tch on TV.
Type of Material: Videos on Common Core subjects and also on teaching practices.
Recommended Uses: Teachers can search by subject area for videos that demonstrate good teaching practice. The site is also useful for student teachers, Pre-service teachers, administrators, coaches and support staff .
Technical Requirements: Opened up in IE, Chrome, and Firefox without a problem. Must have Adobe Flash to view videos
Identify Major Learning Goals: K-12 personnel will be able to explore a database of videos on topics categorized by subject, grade, topics, and roles. K-12 personnel will be able to examine weekly newsletters and TV episodes on various educational subjects and topics. There is also a blog available. K-12 personnel will be able to ascertain information from the Tch staff bloggers. K-12 personnel will be able to post questions on subjects and topics and receive feedback from a community of colleagues.
Target Student Population: The target population is K-12 teachers.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Must have a fast internet connection, Adobe Flash, and must sign into the site to comment on the videos and receive the blog.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: Extensive learning materials submitted by K-12 personnel and arranged according to subject, grades, topics, and roles. Each learning material includes a video, lesson objectives, length of video, guided questions,common core standards, teacher information, supporting materials, a transcript of the video, and a place for discussion. Quality of videos is high.
Concerns: Because these videos use Adobe Flash teachers who access the Internet using their iPads will not be able to access. The site is very honest about this and reminds teachers if they have slow connections that the videos may be jerky.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: The materials available through this site are vast and appeal to many roles in the K-12 learning environment. For example, there are videos that range from topics on differentiation to solving a math equation to using clickers in the classroom. The learning materials are designed to improve faculty and students abilities to teach and learn the materials. In addition, the materials can be easily integrated into the curriculum and be used in a variety of ways in order to achieve learning outcomes. Teachers who sign up can comment on the videos, providing yet another way to learn.
Concerns: None of the videos We watched were closed captioned. That feature would be helpful for viewing in a group setting,

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: This site was very easy to navigate. Located at the top of the homepage are links to the blog, newsletter, Tch on TV, videos, teachers, and Q&A. Inside the videos, teachers, and Q&A pages, there is a menu with categories designed to help locating the desired materials. There is also a search box on each page. On each video page, information such as learning objectives, guided questions, and supporting materials are arranged in a manner that is easy to follow. Lastly, at the bottom of the homepage there are links to information about the organization and how to contact them for support, general inquiries, frequently asked questions, terms and conditions, and policies.
Concerns: The web site is very open about the fact that Flash is required to view the videos and that some schools may block video on their server.