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Working with video

The wonderful Rachel Roberts put together these resources, tips and guidelines about working with video, although she does say a "big thanks to Pascale from myPortfolio learning languages group for a lot of this material".



Video Files come in all formats and sizes!

TIP: you do not have to upload the software which come with your recording device - just open the file (often from the DCIM folder)

  • depending on the quality of your recording device or it's settings, the bigger the video file they create.
  • Sometimes certain file formats can not play on your computer. You need to trial which work with your computer video player eg: Quicktime, Windows Media Player so you will either need to download software that will play the video or convert the video file to another file format.
  • depending on file size and Internet speed (bandwidth) files may take time to upload
  • if you choose to display & then embed your video from another video hosting site (eg: Vimeo, Youtube, Google videos): you can upload a wide range of video file formats to these hosting sites and file size may not be a problem, but remember that to upload to the video site of your choice, you still need to have enough bandwidth to upload large files.
  • Be prepared to do a bit of "trial and error"!

TIP: if you edit your video file (with Windows Movie Maker or Imovie or any other software) you can change the file format when sharing your edited file.

Converting Video Files

Converting video files to smaller files/other formats may result in some slight video quality loss.

TIP: once your files are shrunk and you are satisfied with size/format, delete the large original files of your computer/server/device: save space for other things!


Converting Video Files on a Windows computer

Image source

  • Download Free Format Factory
  • Install
  • Launch Format Factory
  • TIP: How to convert using Format Factory video
  • Select All to FLV 320 x240 from the Video dropdown menu (Left hand side of screen)
  • Select Add file, select you file.
  • Choose where your converted file goes in Output folder
  • Select Start.
  • Wait till done, then check file has converted properly by playing it

TIP: Format Factory also converts sound files to .mp3 (compatible with the Embedded media player) and picture files (if the pictures you get from your camera are too big to upload, convert them to .png)

Converting Video Files on a Mac

  • Download Free Video Monkey
  • Install
  • Launch Video Monkey
  • Drag the video file and drop it in the content area (blue and white stripes)
  • In Convert To drop down menu select Flash (.flv) under video format
  • In quality, drag the cursor between Low and Standard. Keep an eye on File Size above the blue and white stripes: remember that it must be below 50MB
  • Then select Start (green button left hand corner above the blue and white stripes)

TIP: your converted file will be save in the same folder as your original file. Wait till done, then check file has converted properly by playing it


  • Download Free MPEG Streamclip
  • Install.
  • Launch MPEG Streamclip
  • Drag the video file into the grey box
  • Go to File
  • Choose Export to MPEG-4
  • In Compression choose H.264
  • in Frame size choose Other 320 x 240
  • then click on Make MP4
  • Change name in Save As box
  • Indicate Where you want to save it
  • Save

Encoding a video file takes time, be patient! (you can close the exporter view if you want to while you wait)

Wait till done, then check file has converted properly by playing it.

Any Video Converter is another great tool for Mac or PC

Hosting Video

Vimeo, Teacher Tube and YouTube, are three examples of sites where video files can be hosted.

Check which hosting site can work for you in your school - ask to be unblocked if necessary.
Videos uploaded to Vimeo and YouTube may need to be public to be able to be embedded in other sites.
By uploading videos to either of these sites you can:

  • save space on your own website or web space
  • bypass some of the file format issues (a wide range of format can be uploaded to those sites)
  • bypass some of the files size issues (uploading to these hosting sites will depend on the speed of the Internet you are working on)

TIP: you may choose to host your video files on external sites but still have to convert them to a smaller file size to allow for faster upload.

Video Editors

You don't need to buy expensive software or even download software, there are a number of video editing tools available straight through your browser. Some have apps that will work on your tablet or smartphone. You will need a reasonable level of bandwidth to work with these tools, some have more functionality & features than others, try them out:

If you have any tips or recommended tools please let us know in the comments below.

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