Video A Problem Being Solved

We had a visit a month and a half ago from Jim Maltas who teaches at the University of Northern Iowa lab school. He showed us a classroom that his team wired with microphones, video cameras, a teacher and math students. We watch the videos and learned from them. It was time well spent on a professional development day.

I wondered to myself if I would gain some insight into my students if I videoed them. Here is what I did.
  1. I taught a new mathematical model in a pretty traditional way.
  2. I gave some simpler example problems.
  3. When it came time to give a problem that put it all together I had the students video their groups solving the problems. 
Here is a link to one of the videos. For the good conversation watch from 0:50 to 2:00. I love that they are arguing about efficiency and referring to their notes to solve the dispute.

Here are some things I did right.
  1. I told them I would not help during the videos, I wanted the conversations, no the right answers.
  2. If you were holding the pen you could not talk.
  3. I did not watch all the videos. I wandered the room listening to the conversations and noted the moments that highlighted missteps I normally would have warned about in a lecture.
  4. The next day I showed just a minute from two videos where groups argued and overcame the common misconceptions on the problem.
Here are some things I did wrong.
  1. I had them use Photo Booth to make the videos. Using the built in Quicktime recorder flips the video so you can read the problems.
  2. I should have had them write the problem on the board or flip chart paper.
  3. A couple of the groups did a Camtasia recording of the process and did the problem in Skitch. I liked this, but I wish they had turned on the camera in Camtasia so we could have seen the group too.
How would you use this strategy? I think it has benefits different from a flipped classroom and it can be used later as professional development. Hope you like the idea, and I would love to know if you have ideas to extend it.