I made this as part of my graduate course in adult education, around the idea of learning by creating and sharing “artifacts” on the web in a “digital portfolio”.
My 7 year old son Gabe is a big paper airplane enthusiast. In this video, Gabe shows you how to make a paper airplane of his own design, “The Poining Arrow”. As you can see in the video, Gabe is a natural explainer. We rehearsed once or twice before we recorded this, and he went into about twice as much detail in the actual video as he ever did during rehearsal, without ever missing a beat or needing to do a second take. Contrary to what he said in the video, this was actually his very first how to video, and I was very impressed with his style and ability to explain what he was showing. I recorded the video on my smartphone, and uploaded it directly to YouTube.
We’ve been using Gabe’s interest in paper airplanes in our homeschooling to learn about all kinds of things – geometry, symmetry, lift, drag, and experimentation with different designs to see how they perform. We’re just getting started with the idea of making how to videos and guides, but we’ll definitely be doing more. They’re a great way to take a constructionist approach to learning – making something (a physical or digital artifact), sharing it with others, and thinking/talking about what’s being learned.