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Tag Archives: online science teaching

Physics GCSE Video Course Is Now Completed!


After six months of continuous effort and late nights I am really pleased to announce my latest video product – the complete iGCSEPhysics front slide Physics Course. Alongside my existing Biology and Chemistry video courses this now means that the science suite is complete! Have a look at the new course by following the link below and clicking on the ‘Physics’ tab:



I have now produced about 75 videos, with each one being between 15 and 20 minutes long. A quick calculation would suggest that I have created over 4,500 individual Powerpoint slides. Each video takes between 6 – 8 hours from initial idea to final rendering, so that’s a lot of time invested in my courses.

What’s kept me going is the fact that I actually enjoy what I do. I’ve been a teacher for over 30 years, and I still get a buzz whenever students enjoy my presentations and want to know more. Without this continual feedback I doubt if I could ever maintain the effort to finish the videos. But I have finished them, and I’m really proud of what I have created. See what you think …………


Until next time,



My Udemy Online Science Course.

udemy image 2

Recently I was introduced to the delights of Udemy.com .  I have been producing science revision videos in both GCSE Biology and GCSE Chemistry so I decided to re-package the material as a more general introductory course aimed primarily at homeschoolers.

The homeschooling market is huge – about 2.9% of U.S. students (around 2 million students) are home schooled.  It is estimated that over 50,000 children are home educated in the UK and the figure is rising by 80% per year.  Similar statistics are readily available for other countries such as Canada, South Africa and Australia.

Udemy is an online learning platform, and is now the world’s largest destination for online courses.  Some of the courses are free, but the majority are available only to subscribers.  The most popular courses earn their authors six-figure incomes, although these tend to be in the fields of website development or business.  Education is the poor partner (at the moment), but using Udemy is a good way of potentially getting your courses noticed.

I have now finished the third part of my four part course – ‘Chemistry 101’.  There is clear guidance from Udemy as to how to produce courses, and I have found the process relatively straightforward.  Udemy prefers video content, and most courses are video-based.

A nice feature of Udemy is the ease with which coupons can be generated.  These coupons allow authors to offer discounts to potential subscribers, and so enable them to rapidly expand the exposure of their products.

That reminds me – as a reader of my blog I would like to offer you free access to Part 3 of my course.  To access the course simply click on this link:


This will get you directly to the course content (if a code is required, enter CHEM101#013).

I hope you enjoy what you find – if you want to give any feedback then it would be much appreciated.

Until next time,



Science Revision – What Is …..?

Science revision - what isAs a teacher I get increasingly frustrated with the amount of time my students waste searching for answers on the Internet. It’s hardly surprising, given the volume of information available. I liken it to putting a student in the middle of the largest library in the world, asking them a question, and then expecting them to come up with an answer in minutes from a suitable book.

Even Google, with all its massive search potential, is proving relatively ineffective at throwing up the needles in the haystack. In a recent copy of ‘Wired’ magazine the legendary Will.i.am talked about the need for information filters – we need to make searching smarter and less of a hit-or-miss process.

As a result of recent experiences I have decided to start putting together a range of simple videos to answer specific questions. I’m calling the video series ‘Science Revision – What Is …..?’, and the first video simply describes the difference between speed and velocity – how many times do students fail to understand this?

When asking questions on the internet students are invariably directed towards sites such as Wiki Answers – sometimes the responses given are appropriate, but at other times the responses are completely at the wrong level or utterly lame.

I am hoping that my short videos will answer many of the basic questions being asked by students – in fact, I’m hoping that they will be asking me questions and so giving me the opportunity to respond!

To have a look at the first video either click on the image above or on the link below.

Until next time,


Science Revision – What is the difference between speed and velocity?

Science Revision Videos In The Top 30!

Revision Universe

Recently I’ve been looking at a website – Revision Universe - produced by Arnav Rawat.  Arnav really has been doing his homework, and he has put together an excellent list of revision resources, in subjects ranging from Biology and Chemistry through to History and Geography.  I know that my students often get overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of information available on the internet, and it’s really useful to be able to point them towards a site that has many quality resources.

Revision Universe also has an active blog, and there are some excellent articles from Arnav, and also some guest bloggers.  I particularly like the ‘Top 30 Educational Websites’ blog post.  Arnav has used his own judgement to put together a list of websites that he considers to be amongst the best available.  The ‘big hitters’ such as BBC Bitesize are not included in the list, but there are some well known ones such as S-Cool and Planet Science.

I’m really excited because one of my sites, Science Revision Videos (http://www.sciencerevisionvideo.com/) appears at number 17!  I developed this site a little while ago to showcase some of my biology and chemistry revision videos, and it’s proved to be very popular with students preparing for their exams.  I’ve also done some work for the site ‘Education Quizzes’ and I’m really pleased to see the site at number 11.

Arnav has done a great job with the educational website survey, and I do recommend that you have a look at it (and that’s not just because my site is listed!).  To visit the Revision Universe website just click on the image at the top of this blog or the link below.

Until next time,


Top 30 Educational Websites

Steve Spangler Science


Steve Spangler

One of my aims in setting up Online Science Teaching was to bring together outstanding science materials for use by others.  I’ve been following Steve Spangler Science for a while, and I have been very impressed with his enthusiasm for science, his ‘showmanship’ and also his ability to make science a real entertainment through the demonstration of simple experiments.

Have a look at this video to see what I mean.  OK, it’s not perhaps an experiment you would want to do yourself (many school health and safety officers would throw their hands up in despair if you tried!) but it would be great to share this video with your students, and get them to discuss the science behind it.

This is what online science is about – finding resources that really will inspire your students, and encouraging them to ask questions.  The best questions often arise from the simplest investigations

Until next time,


Create Your Own Online Teaching Resources, Part 3 – Planning Your Presentation

Create your own teaching resource Part 3

Welcome to video 3 in this series, and here is where the fun really starts!  In parts one and two we have looked at the whys and wherefores of online teaching using videos, and it’s now time to start putting content together.

As a teacher, I use Powerpoint every day, and I really enjoy creating my presentations.  Each presentation helps me to really think through the topic area, and to sift out what is really important.  Powerpoint is my tool of choice – despite what others may say about it! 

When I first started teaching there was much debate about ‘death by worksheet’.  The commonly held opinion was that too many worksheets were being used, and many were of very poor quality.

The same has been said about Powerpoint – ‘death by bullet points’ is the frequently heard mantra.

To a certain extent I understand the ‘worksheet’ and ‘bullet-point’ debate.  There are an awful lot of sub-standard resources out there, which do little to enhance the teaching experience.  What we should be looking for is the quality of resources – if they’re no better than you’ve already got then don’t bother using them.

Classroom Of The Future

Classroom of the future

Are you still unsure that online teaching is the way to go?  This morning I received a link from Khan Academy to a video from USA Today titled ‘The Classroom of the Future”.  The video reported on the work of Knewton and Khan Academy, two of the leaders in developing online teaching.

The video is really worth a watch, and I’ve included it here for your enjoyment – just click on the image above to get direct access to the video report.

I’ve been a great fan of the Khan Academy for quite a while, but I’ve got to admit that I’ve not come across Knewton before.  Both organisations are passionate about making online learning affordable across the globe, and they really are making a difference.

I hope you enjoy the video and feel inspired to have a go at making your own resources.  But don’t worry, as long as there are great teachers there will always be a need for the reality of the classroom!

Until next time,


Create Your Own Online Teaching Resources, Part 2 – The Tools

Create your own teaching resource Part 2

I’m a great fan of the TV programme ‘Grand Designs’.  I just love to see the buildings being erected from start to finish, and I marvel at some of the craftsmanship on show.

But it doesn’t matter how gifted you are as a craftsman, if you havn’t got the right tools then you can’t get the job done.

The same idea applies to creating your online teaching resources – if you havn’t got the right tools for the job then all your efforts will be fruitless.

In my second video in the ‘Create Your Own Online Teaching Resources’ series I describe in detail all of the software and hardware tools I use in order to make successful videos.

Many people may be a little cautious about dipping their toes into the video-production market, and quite rightly may not wish to invest their money in resources they might never use again.  I fully understand this view, and when I started out I used as much free kit as possible.

Valence Electrons – An Example of an Online Resource

Valence electrons resource

My previous blog post was the first in a series in which I will be describing how I put together my online video resources and how I produce and upload them.  At this point I thought that I would show you an example of the sort of products I enjoy creating.

I have another site where I upload science revision videos, and to date my videos have been watched nearly 16,000 times – not bad for a channel that has only been up and running for a short time.  I have offered to make revision videos ‘on demand’, and it has been really rewarding to receive requests from viewers for specific topics.

The video ‘Valence electrons’ was recently requested, and from beginning to end must have taken me about three hours. The majority of this time is spent putting together the various Powerpoint slides – the recording phase is relatively short (except today when anything that could go wrong did go wrong!).

Create Your Own Online Teaching Resources!

Create your own teaching resource

In recent blog posts I have discussed the relative merits of blended (flipped) learning and spaced learning.  Both of these approaches can impact significantly upon your teaching, and upon the success of your students.  Just this morning I have checked on a spaced learning resource that I put up on YouTube for my students in preparation for a test, and it was really heartening to see how many hits there have been – my time has obviously not been wasted!

Feedback received from the blog posts has been really positive, but one of the questions I keep getting asked is “how do I develop the video resources for my students?”. 
Such a good question, and I’ve decided to do something about it!  Over the past couple of years I must have produced several hundred online videos, and my hit counter of YouTube is now fast approaching 100,000 hits.  My daughters can’t believe that their dear old dad is such a success on ‘the Tube’!