Five things to look for in YouTube clips

What YouTube clips are going to "work" with your learners? Here's one, which I've not used with a class of learners (yet!) but which seems to have a lot going for it…

With just about any YouTube video you use with learners you want:

  1. A short clip, under 3 minutes definitely, under 2 better, under 1 terrific!
  2. Clear sound
  3. Something that it will lead on to, perhaps discussion, definitely use of the language and interaction between the learners

This one I spotted today on The Guardian under the headline Brad Pitt's Chanel No 5 ad: the smell of disaster, which gives me (4) a related article or other text to read and get further language and discussion from; the latter might take place after class, outside class, via an Edmodo group. Note also the other ads linked to in the article.

All I need now is (5) a simple, meaningful listening task of some kind; I'm thinking along the lines of seeing if, in pairs, the learners can jot down what Mr Pitt says verbatim…

But perhaps someone can suggest a better listening task… or a sixth (or seventh thing!) to look for in clips?

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  1. I just happened to drop in last Saturday and … there he was, Mr Pitt!!. I just couldn't help hitting the video button player straight away(sorry for not reading your notes and lesson plans first!). The thing is, I didn't know anything about 'Chanel 5'advertising campaign so I got driven away by Mr Pitt's speech trying to figure out what kind of film and character could he be possibly working at ,and before I realised it was just an ad (I had a good laugh at that!!)different possibilities (new Gladiators, Bravehearts, … something really epic or even Shakesperean…) had come to my mind. I suggest:
    a)Playing the clip up to 'Chanel 5' and letting the students do what I innocently did!.
    b)Working with smells.I've never done that with my students and I can't remember any smell lesson as a student. The connection between Mr Pitt and perfume made me think about something like 'What do heroes, celebrities, … smell of?' and If you asked me about Mr Pitt's ad I'd answer he smells fresh and clean with a subtle touch of exotic noble woods, 😉

  2. Love both of those ideas, Carme!

    Suspect quite a lot of people will do the same (and students, too!): click "play" before they've realised it's an ad.

    (Unfortunately, these things tend to "go viral", and soon everyone has seen them. Think in fact I probably got it from ViralVideoChart, a great source for stuff for class!)

    The "smells lesson" is a great idea… apart from anything else as it will be new to them!

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