Pivot Interactives allows teachers to create activities based on a video that the teacher uploads. For example, say a teacher discovers a giant rope swing and thinks it would be good for students to experimentally determine the length of the pendulum. The teacher records a video on her cellphone and then creates a Pivot Interactives activity based on the video. When the teacher assigns this activity to students, students can analyze the teacher's video to complete the activity.

1. Record video

Pointers for recording useful video:

  • Record in an area with lots of light. This will reduce the exposure time and reduce motion blur
  • Hold camera still; use a tripod, or rest camera on stationary surface
  • Point the camera perpendicular to the direction of motion
  • Make sure to place an object of know size in the video, with the object the same distance from the camera as the moving object. You'll need it to scale the rulers when you analyze the video

Once you have a good video, send the video to your computer:

  • email the video to yourself from your phone and retrieve the file using your email account while on your laptop
  • use Airdrop in IOS or Google Drive to transfer the file to your laptop

2. Create an Activity for the Video

  1. From your My Library page, click +New Activity
  2. Enter the title of the activity, the learning objectives, and other notes in the introduction
  3. Click Add Section to create the first section of the activity.
  4. Add an introduction to the section, and then add a Instructor Video Upload component to the section as shown below:

3. Upload the video into your activity

Only MOV and MP4 files can be uploaded into Pivot Interactives. Also, video files must be encoded with the H.264 codec. Video from Apple iPhones and Android phone can be directly uploaded into Pivot Interactives. If you are not sure, just upload the video to see if it works. If the video does not display after being uploaded, skip to the instructions at the bottom of the page to convert your video.

Once you have a good video, you can upload it to Pivot Interactives two ways:

4. Calibrate the rulers (beta, optional)

You can use the beta calibration tool to calibrate the rulers. If you do, the ruler calibration will be preset for your students and they can begin analyzing the video. If you don't calibrate the rulers when you create the activity, your students can still calibrate the rulers when they work on the activity. To calibrate the rulers:

  1. If the calibration tool is not visible, click tool button in the upper right of the screen, and then the calibration tool button.
  2. Drag the ends of the calibration tool to align with the reference object in the video.
  3. When the ends are positioned correctly, type the length of the reference object, with units, into the text box in the middle of the calibration tool.
  4. You can verify that the calibration is correct by clicking on the ruler tool and measuring the reference object with the ruler.
  5. When you are satisfied with the calibration, press save at the bottom of the activity.

Here's how the process looks:

5. Complete the activity

  1. Add instructions for the students, describing what kind of analyses you expect them to do.
  2. Add additional components to the activity, such as data table and graphs or open-ended questions.
  3. Save the activity, and assign it to your students.

Optional: Convert video to MOV or MP4 format

Only MOV or MP4 video files can be uploaded to Pivot Interactives. Also, videos must be encoded with the H.264 codec. If you upload a video into Pivot Interactives and it doesn't work you can use free online conversion tools like Cloud Convert to quickly convert any video file to .mp4. Here's how:

  1. Go to Cloud Convert
  2. Click Select Files

Go to Cloud Convert and click Select Files

  1. Select .mp4, and click Start Conversion

Select .mp4 format and click Start Conversion

  1. When the conversion is complete, click Download to download the video. Once the video is on your computer, you can return to step 4 to upload the video into your activity.
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