How I Use It
I have used the videos for teacher-led lessons, and for individual student work. Furthermore, I find the games offered by BrainPOP to be even better than the videos. For instance, I presented a lesson on identifying minerals, with terms reinforced by the Identifying Minerals video. Before I had my science class complete a lab on identify minerals, I had students play the BrainPOP game "Master Mines" on Identifying Minerals (http://www.brainpop.com/games/mastermines/). Students were sent on field trips around the world to collect mineral specimens, and they had to visit stations within the laboratory in the game to identify the mineral. Within the game, students performed easier tests including the color, streak, and hardness of the mineral. In addition, as students advanced through the game, they were able to complete tests for crystal form, which would be difficult to do with the limited resources in a middle school science lab. Further, the game appealed to ELL and special education students, as the game was narrated, and pacing varied according to ability. After the students completed Master Mines, they were able to successfully complete the hands-on lab on identifying minerals, correctly identifying color, luster, hardness, and streak using prior knowledge provided by the Master Mines game.
The videos are a great way to introduce new concepts, or to summarize a lesson with a quick assessment at the end. I find that the games are extremely helpful for individual practice.