Cooper City teacher uses YouTube to prep students for school

COOPER CITY, FLA. (WSVN) - A South Florida teacher is helping students get ready for school with a unique lesson plan involving YouTube.

Sandra Lopez-Gallardo, a language arts teacher, has been making videos before each school day for a few years now.

“Don’t forget today you got a pop quiz. Check your notes!” said Lopez-Gallardo in one of her videos. “Remember: ‘If you’re always ready, you’ll never have to get ready.’ James Brown.”

Lopez-Gallardo uses this technique for her sixth-grade students at Pioneer Middle School in Cooper City.

“I call it ‘edu-tainment.’ I educate, and I entertain,” said Lopez-Gallardo.

The idea behind the videos is to give students and parents a quick rundown of what they can expect every school day.

The videos are helpful in that students can watch them however many times they need, which is especially important for children in Exceptional Student Education programs.

Repetition and one-on-one attention is very important for ESE students.

“They can watch it again and again until they get it without being embarrassed,” said Lopez-Gallardo. “They’re like, ‘Ms. Lopez, I watched it. I got it. I’m good,’ and I’m like, ‘Yes!'”

The videos can also be helpful for students who miss a day of school, so they aren’t in the dark when it’s time to catch up.

Lopez-Gallardo said parents can also benefit from the videos.

In fact, it was a conversation with a mother having trouble talking to her son about his day that sparked this idea.

“So I said, ‘How can I help this mom and this child connect a little better?’ How can I get him to say, ‘This is what happened in class,'” said Lopez-Gallardo, “and I’m like, ‘I’m going to make her a video.'”

Lopez-Gallardo’s unique idea earned her an Innovative Teacher Award in 2017.

She has been teaching for 15 years and said she’ll keep going until the day she stops loving it.

Lopez-Gallardo’s students can get ready to click, watch and learn when they return to class on Aug. 14.

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