ALVIN, Tex. — One of the most creative uses of cell phones is being utilized at Alvin Community College.
Jason Schreiber, assistant baseball coach at Alvin Community College (Alvin, Tex.), listened intently to a lecturer speak at a convention.
“That person said that we retain 10 percent of what we hear, 50 percent of what we do and 90 percent of what we teach someone else,” said Schreiber.
“A light went on in my head when I heard that. I was fascinated with the 90 percent figure. I wondered if my players might be able to teach me about certain baseball concepts they were having trouble with on the field which would allow them to learn concepts more efficiently. The big problem was that there was not enough time in practice to have my guys teach.
“Then it hit me that my guys could teach me concepts they were having trouble with via the video capability on their cell phones. Every kid has a cell phone with video capability.
“What I discovered was remarkable. Not only did I know for certain my players understood what we were teaching through these videos they made. I learned kids today take great pride in the videos they produce — so much so a player’s sense of urgency goes up dramatically when you have them teach a skill they do not perform well. Often the result is that player finally understands the concept and performs better on the field.”
Schreiber said that he initially asked his players last season if they could make videos from their cell phones. The answer was a resounding yes. And many of the players had made YouTube videos, but not about baseball.
“Initially, I had them make simple videos such as explaining bunt coverages on first and third plays — that type of thing. I wanted them to teach back to me these concepts. Then I would know if each player knew what to do with these simple videos from their cell phones.
“It was the first time in my coaching career that I was certain everybody knew what they were doing. We probably learned our bunt coverages in about 1/3 of the time. It usually takes us three weeks to really do it without mistakes. We were doing it within the first week. It made a big difference in what we were doing.”
It should be noted that none of these cell phone videos are Hollywood productions. Kids simply talk into their cell phone and explain concepts that Schreiber asks his players to discuss. They simply turn on the video record function of the cell phone, point the lens toward their upper body and begin talking. When they are done, the stop button is pressed, and that is the completed video.
For more on how Schreiber uses cell phone videos for teaching, purchase a copy of the October 3, 2014 issue or subscriber to Collegiate Baseball by CLICKING HERE.