Sunday, July 1, 2018

Using Green Screens in the Classroom

Using Green Screens in the Classroom

With 21st century learning and skills centering on creativity, collaboration, critical thinking and creation (21st Century, 2016), green screens and their use in video creation are a great classroom tool. Green screen technology also known as chroma key compositing, allows the creator to replace a particular colour in a video or movie and layer different elements together to recreate scenes (Learn, 2017). Hollywood movies provide students with a number of examples of how chroma key compositing work to make actors appear to be just about anywhere. Students can create their own green-screen supported videos using simple school materials and various apps. Since the actor can be placed in a number of varied settings the opportunities for students to demonstrate their learning in a fun and interactive way are endless.

Use of a green screen in a classroom supports the current maker movement in education which develops STEM skills. Students being able to actually make something leads to the further development of their interpersonal and technical skills (Hira, Joslyn & Hynes, 2014). The more opportunities teachers provide students to demonstrate their learning in ways which appeal to them the greater the interaction and engagement of the learners (Hira et al., 2014).

User Friendly Application for Classroom Use - DoInk 

DoInk makes it easy for students to use iPads or iPhones to create animations or green-screen videos of their own. The user interface is simplistic and student friendly but still produces excellent results (DoInk, 2018). 

For a quick tutorial on how DoInk works click the video below!

There are a number of green screen video editors available, some which offer more advanced options which may be suitable for students with greater knowledge of green screen or video editing technologies.

Setting Up A Classroom Green Screen 

1) Find a Green Backdrop 

Finding your green backdrop can be quite simple. Any material which is uniform in shade, is limited in wrinkles, and is size appropriate for your project will work! Examples of some tools which work are table clothes, sheets, pizza boxes (painted green), cutting boards

2) Set Up Your Recording Device

Using a tripod or any tool which helps to steady the camera and ensure that students can easily use and manipulate the space is best! 

3) Help Students Source Backgrounds

Finding backdrops for the videos can be difficult. To ensure that students can locate backdrop images safely offer them alternatives to Google image searches. Pixabay is one option where students can find free, stock photos safely. Brainstorm a list of options with students before beginning. 

4) Find Software That Works For Your Students

Ensuring that the technology available to the students fits their abilities is important so they can feel successful. The technology available to them should challenge them to problem solve and work with their peers but if it is too advanced they may become discouraged. 

5) Let the Students Explore

Provide them with multiple opportunities to use the technology. Let the students come up with ways they can demonstrate their learning using the tools! (Bambury, 2015)


21st century competencies: foundation document for discussion. (2016). Toward defining 21st century competencies for Ontario. Retrieved from 

Bambury, S. (2015, June 24) Top 10 tips for green screen by do ink. Retrieved from
DoInk. (2018). Retrieved from

DoInk. (2013, Oct 23) Easy-to-use green screen by doink app enables creation of green screen effects on iphone and ipad. [Video File]. Retrieved from

Hira, A., Joslyn, C. H., & Hynes, M. M. (2014). Classroom makerspaces: Identifying the opportunities and challenges. Paper presented at the 1-5. doi:10.1109/FIE.2014.7044263

Learn how to... create a green screen effect. (2017, 10). Windows Help & Advice, 27-29. Retrieved from

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