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Benefits of the NEW WePlaySmart® Video Capture for Child Assessment

Written By: Ashley McIntyre

Publish Date: Feb 22, 2018

New WePlaySmart Video CaptureOur innovative WePlaySmart® table, the first and only early learning multi-touch table that captures collaborative gameplay, now features a video camera! But why did we decide to add video capabilities to WePlaySmart? Check out this Q&A, with information from our early learning experts, to learn more!

Q: How does WePlaySmart’s video capturing feature work?
A: WePlaySmart captures short, 45-second video clips that are recorded at the moments in the game during which children are most likely to be interacting with each other. The table’s fish-eye lens is designed to show as much of the children’s interaction as possible. The video camera shows the children passing, or taking items from one another. Often, a child with a dominant personality will help the others answer, either gently or aggressively. Individual children’s personalities really come out immediately at the table. After the footage has been recorded, it’s stored in the table’s memory so teachers can access it later.

Q: Why did Hatch decide to add video capabilities to WePlaySmart?
A: We added video to the WePlaySmart table because we wanted a non-intrusive way to collect work samples of social-emotional skill development, and video has proven to provide richer data than audio alone. Video captures non-verbal, social-emotional interactions between children in the classroom, and helps teachers identify which children are speaking so teachers can rate their skills accurately. Simply put, we saw the potential for even better documentation and more focused individualized instruction.

Q: How does WePlaySmart’s video feature make it easy for teachers to capture the footage and use it in their reports?
A: At strategic points in the games, the table will start recording the children as they play. When the table captures these video clips, they are saved directly to the table. The 45-second timeframe provides teachers a solid sample of the children’s interactions, while ensuring the video files are manageable in size. Teachers can access this data through the Teacher Area, where they can create reports or use a flash drive to put these video clips on another device.

Q: How can teachers who use different assessment tools (HeadStart teachers and teachers who use GOLD®, for example) use this data in their reports?
A: The overview page within the WePlaySmart Teacher Area includes a button called “Save Videos & Report”. This allows teachers to easily select and export videos to a thumb drive, which can then be transferred to another device. Many required assessments, such as Teaching Strategies GOLD® and DRDP, call for documentation of children’s social-emotional skills. WePlaySmart makes this requirement easier than ever!

Q: How can teachers use video footage that WePlaySmart collects to better serve the children in their classrooms?
A: WePlaySmart’s video capture feature enables teachers to observe the children’s interactions, peer teaching moments, and cooperative play, all of which form a foundation for strong, positive social emotional development. Because only a human being, not a computer, can rate social-emotional skills, teachers can watch the videos that the table collects and rate them. The rating scale we use is based on four social-emotional skills, which our research has determined to be essential to child development at this age. Additionally, armed with knowledge about each child’s successes and struggles, teachers can plan their lessons in a meaningful and thoughtful way.

For a closer look at WePlaySmart in action, check out these videos that feature authentic interactions between early learners:
Taking Turns

Interested in learning more about WePlaySmart? Check out this blog post about the WePlaySmart 3.0 and power of collaborative play!

Want to try WePlaySmart for yourself? Click here to request a demo!


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