Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Periscope App? Is it a hit or a miss in teacher groups?

Hey Everybody! I am Danielle from Crayonbox Learning & Teacher Blog Designs! I am here today to talk to you about the Periscope App!

Periscope is an App created by Twitter that allows you to record your own LIVE (short) videos while your followers tune in.  The videos then stay online for about 24 hours after recording so that followers who missed it will be able to watch it.  Followers that tune in can make comments on the videos, and also click the screen to make hearts appear.

I first heard about Periscope following the Teachers Pay Teachers Conference that was held in Vegas recently. There was quite a bit of buzz about Periscope and so like any good techie, I installed it on my new Iphone to check it out.

I opened Periscope initially to just see what it was all about.  My friend Danielle Knight from Study All Knight started her first "Scope"  right after I signed on.  It was really cool to see her on camera and hear what she had to say.  She kind of spoiled me for what to expect because she had prepared for her video ahead of time, including bringing props from a new product she'd made just for Periscope. (You can find that here.)  She kept her Periscope sweet and simple, and even had a small giveaway at the end for her new product.

After I watched Danielle's video,  I got to thinking about how Periscope could be used for teachers long term.  I spent a couple days periodically watching random "scopes" by fellow teacher sellers that I was referred to and quickly realized how Periscope was quickly turning into a fad.   I say that not to hurt someone's feelings but to point out that the App, or the use of Periscope, may not be the right fit for everyone.

One of the things that I discovered early on is that not everyone who Periscopes prepared ahead of time.  I realize that with anything new there is a learning curve, but giggling non-stop, hair flipping, and saying um repeatedly can lead to people tuning you out.

Another thing I noticed is that some of the Periscopes were promoted on Instagram and Facebook to be featuring a specific topic, and then the video doesn't really get to the point.  One of the Periscopes I listened to yesterday had a lot of traffic on it, but after 2-3 minutes of of the presenters giggling and talking about things that had nothing to do with the advertised topic, 1/3 of the viewers tuned out all about the same time. I read several comments afterward indicating that when the person creating the video doesn't get to the point or are spending too much time looking at the little animated hearts or responding to comments that they lose their audience.  While I appreciate the Periscopers for putting themselves out there, I think that the time would be better spent sticking to the point.  It's better to create quality content then it is to try and have the most viewers and little puffy hearts.

Is Periscope a hit or a miss?   Honestly, I am undecided.

I can see where there is value in creating short videos for TPT Sellers to showcase a product they have for sale, or perhaps a small tutorial to explain how to make something for the classroom. I would like to see more Periscope videos that are how-to in nature, where classroom resources are shown in action.  I saw a great video today where 2 teachers had prepared activities on the Alphabet, and demonstrated how the products were used. That was a great way to keep the audience engaged, and interested in learning more about their products.

I can also see Periscope being used for short messages to followers, as the videos can be saved and uploaded to another source like YouTube after the initial 24 hour period.

If you plan on using Periscope for your teaching Blog or store, the first 30 seconds of your video sets the tone for your audience.  If you don't "hook" them in that 30 seconds, they may tune out.  You know how attention spans go....squirrel!   As my Mom always says, "Practice makes perfect."  The more you work with something the better you will become.  Live streaming is the new thing, and hopefully Periscope will become a tool that teachers can use effectively to build their audience.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on Periscope.  Leave me a comment below with your Periscope name and I will follow.

Tune in tomorrow for another perspective on Periscope by Hilary from Primary Planet!

Have a great weekend!


  1. I absolutely agree with you! I just signed up last week and have been inundated with teacher scopes - actually most I've turned off. They say they're going to show you something specific and 5 minutes in, nothing but noting where viewers are from and asking for more hearts. We'll see...the jury's out.
    Are We There Yet?

  2. I think if I can figure out the privacy thing, it can be useful to show my parents things that are happening in the classroom. I am considering a weekly news cast. It seems that you can be private with I am going to talk to my principal about the possibilities.

    Terri Izatt