20 Creative ways to use Screencast-O-Matic for remote teaching lessons

The switch to remote teaching is inspiring educators to get creative. Their classroom tools are changing, but a common challenge remains the same: What’s the best way to engage students? Well, read on for an answer to this question.

The surge in online classes is inspiring a wave of creativity, especially when it comes to screencasting. So, go beyond the basics, and try these 20 creative ideas the next time you launch Screencast-O-Matic.

Getting started with Screencast-O-Matic

Just getting started with recording your lessons? Check out this Beginner’s guide to Screencast-O-Matic:

Once you get the hang of it, you should know how to use it in your lessons. And it goes beyond just recording your lesson: both teachers and students can make use of a good screen-recording app.

Remote teaching lesson ideas with Screencast-O-Matic for teachers

Most of the time, teachers use Screencast-O-Matic to give video instructions and explain their lessons. Check out some more creative ideas using this screen recorder app. In some cases, both students and teachers work together on a bigger project.

1. Escape the classroom

Turn your next lesson plan into an online game. Platforms such as BookWidgets offer escape room templates using their WebQuest widget. Students complete lesson-related challenges to receive clues.

Personalize your game by using Screencast-O-Matic to record short video lessons on your computer screen. Use the Draw & Zoom tools to add text clues within your videos. The more video lessons students watch, the more clues they receive to complete the escape challenge.

2. Translate the conversation

Improve foreign language comprehension by creating picture-in-picture recordings for your students. Set your screen recorder to capture the text of the conversation. Focus your web camera on yourself as you read the text aloud.

Students must translate the conversation into English. The picture-in-picture improves comprehension by connecting reading, listening, and contextual clues given by your nuances.

3. Musical instruction

Even music lessons can go remote with a little planning. Music teachers are combining screencasting with their favorite music apps. Capture finger placement on the piano with your webcam while also recording sheet music on your computer screen. It’s all possible with picture-in-picture recording. Then, select the quick share option within Screencast-O-Matic to automatically generate a video link for your students.

4. Art show

Showcase your students’ art by creating an online gallery. Ask students to review their favorite pieces. Edit their reviews and projects together using Video Editor, and share the completed art show with parents by clicking quick share.

5. Lecture capture

Free up time by recording and sharing lectures. It’s perfect for students who are unable to make class, or who need extra time to review topics. Save space on your computer by housing everything on Screencast-O-Matic’s video hosting platform.

6. On-demand classroom guides

Organize your growing collection of lectures, tutorials, and video assignments to create an on-demand collection of classroom resources. The video hosting platform divides recordings into channels with adjustable privacy settings. Share your channel link with students in your learning management system.

7. Final exam mystery

Redesign your next test by tapping into the fun of BookWidgets again. The interactive learning platform offers a way to create a digital version of the board game Clue. Teachers can customize characters, the plot, and the location to fit their lesson plan. Clues are given through a series of interactive widgets. Teachers can even integrate screencasts to provide context or additional clues. Students complete a quiz at the end of the game which tests their comprehension and solves the mystery.

8. Provide visual directions

Providing directions may seem repetitive for classes that require students to be hands-on. Save yourself some time and record your directions. Send the video link the day before class. Students can watch the instructions on their own time. It also frees up teachers to be more hands-on during online class time.

9. Preview past projects

Save recordings of the best student projects. It should speed up future online lesson planning. For example, you can screencast your lesson plan instructions. Then, select the insert existing recording tool to add videos of previous student projects.

10. Video feedback

Use screencasting to build one-on-one connections with your students. Recording a simple video can create a great impact. Capture your screen as you review their homework. This way, you can talk them through the grading process, correct issues as you find them, and build trust. Video feedback removes barriers created by remote learning.

11. Parent-teacher video updates

Create a Screencast-O-Matic channel for each student’s work. Give parents access to their children’s projects by sharing the link. Or screencast short videos each month, giving parents a personalized update on their child’s progress.

Creative lesson ideas with Screencast-O-Matic for students

When students need to follow your lessons from home, their engagement and motivation will fade away if you don’t switch things up. You can make this way more interactive by giving your students digital classroom projects. Students will be using the Screencast-O-Matic app themselves, which makes them learn about your lesson topics, and teaches them to work with digital tools.

12. How-to video’s

Perfect for younger students to start the school year! Ask students to pick an app, and create a screencast that illustrates how to use it. The videos serve two purposes. First, the videos can be used as reference guides for the entire class. However, more importantly, the videos can also be used to assess a student’s digital literacy.

13. Virtual field trips

No permission slips are needed here. Instead, combine green screen magic and your screen recorder to create a virtual walkthrough of traditional field trip locations. Within Video Editor, incorporate videos and photos taken from past field trips. Use text animation to add pop up facts throughout the footage.

14. Book review trailers

Instead of writing a book report, ask students to create movie trailers about what they’ve read. It’s an opportunity for students to get creative. Students should showcase big plot points, add narration with Screencast-O-Matic’s Video Editor, and use the stock music library to set the tone.

15. Current event newscasts

Challenge students to create a newscast to convey their knowledge of current issues. The webcam option in Screencast-O-Matic is perfect for capturing their video. Use the video editor to add text and graphics. Encourage students to use the overlay video tool to incorporate actual news footage into their projects.

16. Virtual nature

Remote teaching can still be hands-on even when it comes to science. Instruct students to find local examples of specific rocks and mineral specimens, or plants. Document their findings on-the-go with the Screencast-O-Matic iOS and Android mobile apps. Upload videos directly to Google Classroom straight from the app.

17. Online science fair

Ask students to document their science projects on camera. Students can highlight their findings in an edited and narrated video presentation. But set a time limit! Lengthy experiments can be shortened by using the speed tool in Video Editor to timelapse portions of the footage.

18. Video status updates

Skip the scheduling of individual Zoom calls with every student. Instead, ask students to screencast a daily status update. Your class can use the quick share button to generate a link to their video to be shared in your LMS like Google Classroom.

19. Tourism videos

Assign a country to each student, and instruct them to create a tourism video showcasing fun facts, photos, and video clips. Use the Screencast-O-Matic green screen feature to superimpose themselves into their footage, or search for visuals in the stock library.

20. Virtual penpals

Lastly, make penpals more than a writing lesson. Ask students to create presentations for their penpal focusing on their community. Build the presentations in Powerpoint or Google Slides. Give penpals a more personal connection by recording the presentation using Screencast-O-Matic’s picture-in-picture option, which captures the slides as well as the video of the student speaking.

Using Screencast-O-Matic in BookWidgets

If you’re a BookWidgets user, you know how to add multimedia elements to your digital lessons. You can simply add YouTube videos or upload videos up to 10mb in your quizzes or worksheets. This makes it perfect for distance education: you can quickly gauge understanding, and check whether your students understood your instructions video.

Record a video with Screencast-O-matic, upload it to YouTube, and ask your students some questions about the lesson material. That’s it! Using BookWidgets in combination with other learning managment systems such as Google Classroom, Microsoft Teams for Education, or Schoology, allows you to follow your students’ progress live from a distance.

Wrap up

There’s a lot to think about. Remember, personalization is key to remote success. Try the ideas listed above, but no matter what you do: build personal connections.

Share this post with fellow teachers to get them started, or even better, to give them some pro-advice on Screencast-O-Matic.

20 ways to use Screencast-O-Matic for remote teaching


Join hundreds of thousands of subscribers, and get the best content on technology in education.

BookWidgets enables teachers to create fun and interactive lessons for tablets, smartphones, and computers.

Choose from over 40 exercise templates (quizzes, crosswords, jigsaw puzzles, ...), and adapt them with your own content.