The Educational Advantages and Disadvantages of YouTube.

By Richelle Angela Guerra and Margaret Wah Ta

YouTube is an American-online video sharing platform created in 2005 by Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim.  From having the majority of their content be home-made videos to producing full-on, high -quality videos since its creation in 2005 YouTube has come a long way. When people think of YouTube they immediately think about the content associated with entertainment. Although YouTube has a lot of content that fits into entertainment, people have created videos about various subjects, from tutorials, documentaries, analysis videos, podcasts, original content, etc. The educational content on YouTube isn’t what most people think of, but YouTube can be used for educational purposes.

Pros and Cons of using YouTube for Educational Purposes.

Margaret: I think that YouTube can be a great tool for educators for many reasons:

  1. Teachers and students can upload presentations instead of presenting them in class. This would be really helpful to students who have stage fright.
  2. YouTube is a free resource.
  3. It’s accessible to anyone with the internet and an electronic device.
  4. It enables long-distance learning.
  5. Students can watch it on their own time.

Richelle: Those are all very good reasons, but there are still some issues that have to be addressed when educators and students use YouTube. I highlight some of the issues from this article, “11 Pros and Cons of YouTube in Education” and some issues I’ve thought of one my own:

  1. Although it is helpful to students who have stage fright. I think that not having any experience with public speaking is taking away from their learning.
  2. Not all information on Youtube is not reliable and can be outdated.
  3. Not all students have access to a personal electronic device or good wifi.
  4. There is inappropriate content not suitable for certain ages.
  5. There are pesky commercials and advertisements.

Margaret: I can see your point but these issues can be resolved:

  1. Students will not always use YouTube as a method of presenting. There will be a mixture of YouTube presentations and traditional public speaking in class.
  2. Teachers should teach students how to valid information.
  3. If the school has the resources student should be provided with a computer, laptop, or even tablet to use at school. Many schools have computer labs where students can use the school’s laptop for homework and research. Some schools even provided their students with a laptop specifically assigned to the students. If students have no access to an electronic device the teacher should always have an alternative way to accomplish the assignment.
  4. Teachers would have to screen the videos to make sure the videos are suitable for their students.
  5. Educators can use an ad blocker to block out the commercials and the advertisements.

There advantages and disadvantages of using YouTube for educational purposes but I believe if students are taught how to use YouTube properly according to Digital Citizenship Education and USE UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools it can be a great learning tool for students and teachers.


Network Learning

One of the skills taught in EDTC 300  was network learning. Network learning is the ability to connect with people and share information, ideas, and opinions online. There are many ways to network. Using social media, messaging platforms, following blogs/vlogs, etc. Networking is also a great way to build your digital identity and presence.

To network, we mainly used Slack, Twitter, and commented on each others’ blogs. Using these devices my classmates and I were supposed to help each other with their learning projects and share our opinions/ideas on other topics. I think that my classmates contributed to my learning project more, them I contributed to theirs.


I didn’t use Twitter as much as Slack and connecting with others on their blogs, but as a class, we participated in a TweetChat on TweetDeck. That was an interesting way to share opinions in a mass-produced and fast-paced way.


Here is where my classmates contributed to the start of my project.


I was the only one in the class that picked sewing for their learning project, while others picked how to learn chess, crochet, photograph, etc. So I was not able to give them advice for the actual projects. But I was able to share what applications could help enhance their blog posts and advice on learning techniques in general.

Learning How to Code

My First Experience with Coding

My first experience with coding was confusing. It was for a science class in elementary school. The assignment was to reconstruct a robot then code it. Building the robot was easy because there was step by step instructions. It was like building a lego set. But coding was another story. My classmates and I had no experience with coding. We had to hook the robot up to a computer and use a website/program to code it. The program used block coding like this:

Blockly | Google Developers
(Image taken from

The teacher had minimal experience with coding and so my classmates and I just followed her instructions to the “t”. We programed the robots but we didn’t understand how the coding made the robots move. I felt like I didn’t lean anything.

Coding in EDTC 300

When I hear that the assignment for EDTC 300 this week was to experiment with coding I was apprehensive because of my past experience. But was easier then I thought it was. The game has video instruction and text instructions so its great for visual/audio and text learners. It was actually fun and I understood how I was controlling the avatars’ movements with coding and I learned some stuff about coding unlike my prior experiences in elementary school.

The New Lingua Franca

Lingua Franca is “a language used for communication between groups of people who speak different languages” (Cambridge Dictionary).  Latin used to be the Lingua Franca of Medieval Europe and today English is the Lingua Franca of the world. I would argue that coding can also be the new Lingua Franca of the world. As an immigrant, I know the power of speaking the Lingua Franca – English. It gives you more opportunities in schools, careers, and access to resources. This is why many non-English speakers learn to speak English because we see as English a tool used to build a better life. As the world becomes more digital-oriented the more people are going to use coding. I believe that teaching students coding is important because knowing how to code it is a tool that will give students more opportunities, just like how speaking English gave me more opportunities to learn and have access to things I would have access to if I didn’t speak English

I went to and pick the Dance Party course.


Digital Literacy

When people think about literacy their first thought is the ability to read and write. Well, there is more than one type of literacy. There is financial literacy, health literacy, social literacy, etc. One more type of literacy that is fairly new is digital literacy.

What is digital literacy? According to the Ministry of Education, digital literacy is defined as  “the interest, attitude and ability of individuals to appropriately use digital technology and communication tools to access, manage, integrate, analyze and evaluate information, construct new knowledge, create and communicate with others.”

In this day and age, digital literacy is an essential skill to learn. According to MediaSmarts, students by the end of Grade 12 should be competent in these 7 digital literacy skills:

  1. Ethics and Empathy – This category addresses students’ social-emotional skills and empathy towards others as well as their ability to make ethical decisions in digital environments when dealing with issues such as cyberbullying, sharing other people’s content and accessing music and video.
  2. Privacy and Security – This includes essential skills for managing students’ privacy, reputation and security online such as making good decisions about sharing their own content, understanding data collection techniques, protecting themselves from malware and other software threats, and being aware of their digital footprint.
  3. Community Engagement – Resources in this category teach students about their rights as citizens and consumers and empower them to influence positive social norms in online spaces and to speak out as active, engaged citizens.
  4. Digital Health –  Digital health skills include managing screen time and balancing students’ online and offline lives; managing online identity issues; dealing with issues relating to digital media, body image and sexuality; and understanding the differences between healthy and unhealthy online relationships.
  5. Consumer Awareness – These skills allow students to navigate highly commercialized online environments. They include recognizing and interpreting advertising, branding and consumerism; reading and understanding the implications of website Terms of Service and privacy policies; and being savvy consumers online.
  6. Finding and Verifying – Students need the skills to effectively search the Internet for information they need for personal and school purposes, and then evaluate and authenticate the sources and information they find.
  7. Making and Remixing – Making and Remixing skills enable students to create digital content and use existing content for their own purposes in ways that respect legal and ethical considerations and to use digital platforms to collaborate with others.

(USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools)

Another aspect of digital literacy is digital citizenship. The Government of Canda defines digital citizenship as “acting ethically by deciding whether certain actions are right or wrong.” and using “knowledge to judge if our actions online are appropriate, and empathy to understand how our choices affect others” (Digital Citizenship: It’s about how you act online).

A policy planning guide Digital Citizenship Education in Saskatchewan Schools, published by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education, also defines digital citizenship as “the norms of appropriate and responsible online behaviour or as the quality of habits, actions, and consumption patterns that impact the ecology of digital content and communities (12).” This policy guide states that people must learn a set of skills, called Ribble’s Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship:

  1. Digital Etiquette – the standards for behaviour in online spaces or when using technology.
  2. Digital Access – to the ability of all students to participate fully in digital society.
  3. Digital Law – legal responsibilities for our electronic actions. It includes issues such as sharing or use of copyright materials, hacking into systems, digital identity theft, or posting illicit photos
  4. Digital Communication – any electronic medium by which people communicate, such as cell phones, social networking services, email, and texting.
  5. Digital Literacy – describes the process of learning about the appropriate and inappropriate use of technology. Skills such as searching for information, evaluating the content of websites, collaborating in networks, and organizing the abundance of information available online.
  6. Digital Commerce – the buying and selling of goods electronically. Students need to be taught to make intelligent decisions when purchasing online.
  7. Digital Rights and Responsibilities – the privileges and freedoms inherent in participation in digital society as the expectations that come with them.
  8. Digital Health and Wellness – includes both physical and
    psychological considerations. Physical and psychological issues
    might include potential health risks of overuse of technology
  9. Digital Safety and Security – relates to the strategies and precautions that individuals should take to ensure their security online.

(Digital Citizenship Education in Saskatchewan Schools)

Dr. Alec Couros and Katia Hildebrandt’s article they state that “students must learn to approach news and information with a critical eye in order to identify intentionally misleading source,” especially since the internet is swamped with false, outdated, and/or biased information or worse sketchy websites. The best way to combat this is to teach students to competent use all of the above skills. Although the Saskctwach Curriculum does not have outcomes and indicators to teach students how be digitally literate, educators can treat the articles, USE UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools,  and the policy planning guide, Digital Citizenship Education in Saskatchewan Schools, as unofficial curriculum for digital education.

Educators can also integrate digital literacy like how Treaty Education is integrated with other subjects. For example, the category  Finding and Verifying – the skill to validate a website or a source of information. When students are researching for an essay or project they must find valid information that will help their assignments. Educators can easily teach this skill in English, Social Studies, and science classes. There are many resources that teachers and students can use to use as reference to test a website such as this blog post, What’s News: Fake, False, Misleading, Clickbait, Satire, or Carefully Reported?

Another example would be Digital Health, the skill of being aware how the use of the internet, social media, phones etc, have an effect on physical and psychological health. This can be taught in health class. In Grade 6 Health outcome USC6.1  “Analyze the factors that influence the development of personal standards and identity, and determine the impact on healthy decision making (including cultural norms, societal norms, family values, peer pressures, mass media, traditional knowledge, white privilege, legacy of colonization, and heterosexual privilege),” can be used to teach students how to develop good decision making, concerning the use of the internet.

Although the official Saskatchwan curriculum does not state that teachers must educate their students on digital literacy it is still a teacher’s duty to teach and keep their students safe offline and online.


Magnifying Glass Icon
(“Magnifying Glass Icon” by Zsolt Baritz is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

What is cybersleuth?

According to PC Magazine, a cybersleuth is a “person who searches the Internet for information about a company, both positive and negative, to keep abreast of public opinion. All Internet facilities are used, including the Web, newsgroups and chat rooms.”

Why is this relevant?

In my EDTC 300 class, our assignment this week is to go cybersleuthing on one of our classmates and see how much information we find on each other. I was able to find their birthday, where they went to school,  and biographical information on them uses social media, such as Facebook, Twitter etc. I even found their blog through Google. It is really scary that with just a few searches anyone can find out information about another.

That adds pressure to create a persona that protects your private life. But should you create a different personality online to protect your privacy? I don’ t think this is a smart decision, especially because people nowadays can judge you use your social media. When people meet you the might seem a discrepancy with the online you and the real you.

Educators, whether the like it or not, are in the public’s eye. Educators, especially teachers are expected to be good role models not just in school or outside of it too. But with these expectations people can create an ideal version of themselves, but not their real selves. Often people show “an edited version of life on social media. People share moments that reflect an ideal life, an ideal self” (Split Image) Educators have to be authentic online while maintaining their privacy. People, not just educators, have to learn how to balance authenticity and privacy both online and offline.

Following Blogs

I decided to use Feedly because I find that I like the interface of the website compared to Digg and Inoreader. That’s just my preference. The great thing about Feedly is that it has a lot of content on different topics,  so it’s a great place to find content on education. But on the other hand there so much educational content that it’s a bit of an information overload. I decided to narrow my content search to content related to elementary education, educational technology, and anything that has to do with being updated to the newest changes in educational policies.

I found this blog that covers politics, current events, and other related topics and how it affects the education system. Although this is an American, blog most content I found can be transferred to a Canadain context. Take this article, for example,  “Flexible Seating: Collaboration Catalyst or Classroom Disaster?” (it’s not about politics but I thought I was interesting). To sum it up the articles argues the pros and cons of having flexible seating ( or non-traditional desk settings). In Canadian classroom flexible seating is starting to be implemented in some classrooms.  I think it’s good to look at different countries’ education systems and see what similarities there are and what they are doing differently.

Screenshot of one of the blogs I’m following

How to Use Lightshot

It was difficult to choose which tool/application to aid with my learning project. Many of the tools where similar, but each had slightly different features from each other. There were many editing tools for audio, visuals, and for both.  There were many other tools for animation, free resources, screencasting, etc. With all these options it was overwhelming to pick one to use for my learning project.

I decided to create a video of how to use Lightshot using Screencastify to video the process. I used Lightshot to screenshot some images I uploaded on my sewing project blog. Here’s the “how to use” Lightshot video I created.

Reflecting on Twitter in Relation with Education

My Personal Experience with Twitter

My age peers (Generation Z) do use Twitter, but not as much as Instagram, Snapchat, or Youtube. I am one of those Gen Zers who would rather use Snapchat than Twitter. As you can guess that I didn’t have a Twitter account before this class, in fact, I just created a Twitter account last month. To be honest I did not touch my Twitter account until my EDTC 300 taught a how-to-use Twitter lesson. Even then I still didn’t get how to use Twitter. It was confusing. What really helped was the twitter chat my EDCT 300 class participated in.

Actually joining a live twitter chat help me learn how to use and navigate Twitter’s interface. I found out that it is very easy to use twitter. It a quick way to send a short thought on a topic and an easy way to initiate a conversation on said topic.

Sometimes Twitter is too fast. When I joint I did not know what to expect. Once the host of the chat started twitting questions to the group. The replies came so fast that it was overwhelming. By the time I answered the tweet the host already moved on to a new question. It was also hard to comment on other people’s tweets, we were moving too fast to digestion the tweet and make a thoughtful comment. Overall my personal experience so far with Twitter wasn’t as bad as I thought I would be.

Twitter in the Classroom

I don’t see students using Twitter for leisure, but I can see them using it for schooling. For example, tweeting general questions and comments to their class, the class would be able to give their answers to ideas. I think that if students are taking an online class Twitter can be a means of communication to each other while they are not currently in their online class.

Reflection: An anthropological introduction to YouTube

  1. Reflect on our changing world and the new culture of participation as described in lecture and by Wesch

An anthropological introduction to YouTube was published in 2008. YouTube was created in 2005. Since then YouTube has given people a platform to share context with a global audience. YouTube’s global audience has given participation culture a worldwide reach. When a YouTube video goes viral it does not just go national it goes international. For example “Dragostea Din Tei” (more commonly known in English as the Numa Numa Song) by the Moldovan pop group O-Zone became viral and people began copying the songs, making their versions and posting them on YouTube. Anyone with access to the internet can upload a video on Youtube and it is relatively cheap to create a video depending on the content.  Regular people can broadcast themselves to millions of people.  People can collaborate with others from around the world.

Youtube in the 2000s and Youtube now has evolved a lot. Our culture has evolved with social platforms, such as Youtube. In 2008 the most popular videos uploaded were home videos, now people upload content on par with big companies. YouTube has given regular people a medium where they can express their creativity, share their opinions, teach and learn new skills and so much more. Many adolescences today create original content and post them on Youtube for recreation/leisure. When adolescences come into the classroom many of them will have writing,  visual and audios editing, filming skills etc. With these skills, adolescences can apply these skills to their schoolwork.

  1. What does this mean for your future classroom?

This means that the nature of transferring, sharing, and demonstrating knowledge has changed. In classrooms traditionally students learn from textbooks or by word of the teacher, now students have access to an almost infinite amount of information and resources. With this amount of information teachers now have to teach students digital literacy such as the validity of information and digital image.

Another change that technology, like Youtube, has brought into the classroom is the form of students’ assignments.  Assignments will be more technology-based. Their resources will mostly come from the internet and not books. The way they hand in their assignments will be online. The assignment will be in in in digital formats, such as pdf, audio recordings, and videos.

  1. What does it mean for schools in general?

In general, schools will have to adapt to a society driven by technology. Schools will have to integrate technology, both hardware and software, in the school building. The quantity and quality of technology will greatly contribute to the students’ academic learning.

  1. How might we rethink the idea of schooling and education in our networked, participatory, and digital world?

Schooling can be conducted differently from traditional methods. Students will learn through creating and collaborating instead of being passive learners. Students can take online classes instead of being a physical classroom Students can learn how to self-study and learn independently through the internet.

5. How can we balance the challenges of our new digital reality with the possibilities that it offers?

There are many challenges regarding our new digital reality. With almost an infinite amount of information there it will be a challenge for both teachers and students to distinguish valid information versus invalid information.

Another challenge is cyberbullying. Unlike traditional school bullying, cyberbullying is harder to escape. Students can get bullied outside of school hours. Also, technology can pose a danger to mental health. For example, students are bombarded with unrealistic beauty standards through social media platforms such as Instagram.

Too much technology can disconnect students from each other and reality and can be a conduit for bullying. Teachers and students must learn how to manage their time online and watch what kind of content they consume.

My Experience with Technology in the Classroom

Hello, I’m Richelle Guerra and welcome to my blog.
I’m a second-year Bachelor of Education (middle years) student. I went to a private elementary school and high school and I graduated in 2018.

You would think that a private school would have all the latest technology and be able to teach the student with it but unfortunately, that was not the case. In my elementary school, there was a computer lab, but the school barely utilized the computers. In my high school years, it did get better. My high school had cubicles instead of a desk and in each cubicle had a laptop later on the school got rid of the computers replaced them with laptops that the students could carry around the school. The laptops were hand-me-downs from another school. They were bulky and heavy to carry, but durable. They looked similar to this laptop.

dscf0861“dscf0861” by jamierytlewski is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Each class also had a SMARTboard, alongside with whiteboards. So my school still used traditional tools with technology.

Using our own devices like iPhones were not permitted in class. We could use it from outside of class for personal use. But the school did not let the student use their devices for school work.

The school offered Information Processing 10 (IP 10) and Information Processing 20 (IP 20). Both of which I took. These courses taught the student how to use all the functions of Word and Excel. They also the students a bit of graphic designing and how to valid websites and information online.

The school also used an app called Parent Portal, which let the parents and students know their current grade. They also use another app called myHomework, which kept track of upcoming assignments and their graded scores.
I have some experience with learning about and through technology, but I have never been experienced creating using technology.

I am new at blogging and I don’t read or follow people’s blogs. So I don’t have much information to based my opinions on blogging. But I do think blogging to another tool that students and teachers should know how to use. It is a great way to express your opinions and share your experience less formally then writing an essay.
I am a bit nervous in writing a blog but I am excited to learn how to create a website and write content.