Screen Recordings to Show Understanding

Screen recordings are a great way to show others how to do something. If you’ve ever searched YouTube to learn how to do something, you’ll know how beneficial it is to watch a video of someone showing their knowledge on a topic. Bringing this practice into your classroom can be a powerful way for students to show their understanding of a skill as well!

Screencastify is a screen recording tool that allows for screen recording that’s available to all students and teachers through Google Chrome. Screencastify can be launched by clicking the “film strip” icon in the Chrome menu:


Bringing this practice into your classroom can be a powerful way for students to show their understanding of a skill as well!

An example of where you might bring Screencastify into your classroom is in math. It can be a great way for students to show their understanding of how to use a virtual manipulative or math tool. As an added benefit, it allows students to practice communication of mathematical ideas and understanding orally and visually, and also adds purpose and accountability to exploring a manipulative or tool.

The Mathies website ( offers a wide range of games, learning tools, and activities linked to the Ontario math curriculum. A student could be asked to explore one of the interactive resources on the Mathies website, and then tasked with creating a screen recording using Screencastify to show what they’ve learned from using the tool. Screencastify provides lots of ways to capture student thinking, including recording the user’s browser tab, voice and webcam; as well as the option to annotate with virtual drawing tools and mouse clicks.

Here’s a short demo video of my understanding of linear growing patterns using the Robot Rule Game on the Mathies website:

An added benefit from using Screencastify is that it can be set to save recordings to Google Drive. This allows for easy submission of screen recordings to Google Classroom, D2L or Moodle.


  1. Have had great success using Screencastify in my grade 9 BTT Business technology class. The students created “How-to” videos using Screencastify and uploaded them to Youtube. These videos then were used in class as a tech support channel (students in the class would use a D2L discussion forum to share their videos and offer them up as helpful videos for their classmates when they needed help).

    These student-created videos really saved me a lot of time offering instruction to students, giving me more time to provide in-class feedback and support for those struggling. Learning how to use Screencastify (or other tools like WeVideo) can really make the class more interactive for the kids, and save the teacher time. It really is worth the investment.


    1. Awesome example to show the power of student creation. Your students had to plan and create videos for an authentic audience – and I bet they got far more out of that then if you had created the videos for them to watch!


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