Binumi

Rob Lewis
Writer and editor for a number of online courses … read more
Rob Lewis

A cool video-creation tool.

Who it’s for:
All ages
Price:
Free (basic), Paid (range of licences)
Platform:
iOS app, Android app

Binumi gives you a chance to bring video creation into the classroom. You’ll probably have to pay to get the most out of it, but it provides a motivating, worthwhile experience.

Making videos in class

Binumi is quite easy to use, but it might take a little time for a teacher to understand that it really is a giant step forward in relation to video you’ve made in your classes before.

Creating videos in class has become easier and easier in recent years. These days you can ask your learners to pick up their phone, point it at something and then just film. It seems simple, but it brings with it a number of classroom management issues. You really need to have clear guidance and rules before you begin, which can be difficult as you go through the different stages of video creation with a group of excited learners. However, because Binumi provides ready-made content, it improves the whole process.

You might be thinking ‘why bother making video in class?’. Organised properly, making video can be a fun and motivating way to build on a topic you’re covering, or a move away from the syllabus for a bit of creativity. If working in pairs or groups, students will need to use language to manage its production and discuss the content, and possibly to record audio. This provides communicative use of functional language, e.g. ‘Do we need more background music here?’. Skills beyond language can be developed too, depending on the age of the learners, from simple motor skills to more advanced editing skills. Finally, because video is everywhere now, it feels a very relevant medium to bring into the classroom, to challenge – or maybe replace – older and perhaps less relevant ones, such as writing letters or postcards.

What makes Binumi so good?

Video projects I’ve seen in lessons tend to involve filming interviews or some kind of group performance. The main reason for this is because there’s a limit to what you can film in a school and its surroundings. The best feature of Binumi, for me, is that it avoids this problem by making a huge number of stock videos, photos and audio tracks available on its site and app, for users to include in their videos. The range of content topics is amazing too, even including clips of natural wonders from around the world.

So, once learners know what kind of video they want, Binumi lets them create a storyboard, choose content from the library – any mix of video, audio and image – and then add some of their own content. They can add text, effects and transitions, easily edit the content, create their finished video, and finally share it with others. There are storyboard templates to help users get started and guide them through this whole process.

As a teacher, you can even set tasks for your classes which relate directly to UK and Australian curriculum topics, among others.

Practically, you can use Binumi via its website or via an Apple or Android app. I found using the app versions on both phone and iPad the easiest. They’re very simple to use and allow you to quickly and easily take photos, or make video and audio recordings to include in your videos.

It sounds fantastic – and it is. The free version has limited storage, but you can create videos and share them on social media. To get the best experience from Binumi, you would need to choose a paying version. There are different levels of licensing available for individuals, for families and for schools, at different costs. The first step is to just register (it’s simple) and see for yourself all the amazing features.

How to use Binumi

If you decide to choose a licence, it’s not difficult to imagine ways in which you might use Binumi. You could create a video version of a story, presentations, anything really! For learners, at a simple level, you can ask them to make a video about their daily routine or even part of it – perhaps they could do it as a homework project, and then share their videos on social media or your learning management system (LMS). They can also give feedback on their peers, which, if managed carefully by you as the teacher, can be a very rewarding experience for everyone.

Just make sure you ask yourself why you want to bring video creation into your classes. As well as the reasons I’ve already mentioned, there is one other thing I’ve noticed. In making a video in English, learners can do multiple recordings until they get a version of video or audio they like. This encourages learners to think carefully about using the right language.

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