I’ve been producing videos on definite integrals this week for my online calculus class, and I’m particularly proud of this Video Lesson on the Net Change Theorem.

I have rebuilt the PowerPoints to include animated examples of water filling a reservoir…


… and particle motion… showcasing the difference between displacement and distance traveled.


The animations were built completely in PowerPoint, with voice-over and recording using Camtasia.

I had a bit of a flashback last night as I stayed up late laboring over these animations. When I was in high school, 15 years ago, my senior project was work in animation. I’m pretty sure that my ability to animate now is a direct result of my learning how to animate 15 years ago. Who knew then that I would find that year of animation work helpful now? I can’t even remember what software I was using then!

Sometimes I hear instructors say that you could never teach an online class with the same quality as a traditional class, and while they cannot be directly compared… I am 100% sure that this semester, my online class gets better “lectures” than my traditional class. I teach the traditional class, and then rebuild all the PowerPoints and build in animations for the online class. Next time around, the traditional class will also get the benefit of the added animations, but it is unlikely that I would’ve spent the time to do them if I was not teaching the online class as well.

I guess you could say that the online class is inspiring me to truly revise all of the materials for my Calculus courses.

Would anyone like to see a video on how I built the animations?

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