Saturday, September 24, 2011


This week's challenge was to explore Youtube. I've watched videos on Youtube before. I watched old music videos that I watched, danced, and sang to 'back in the day,' as my kids would say. I've also used Youtube to find instructional videos on many varieties of topics. In fact, I used Youtube to find out how to create my Voki or mini-me that resides on my blog.

The use of Youtube could come in handy in libraries, given proper permissions are obtained to record and share events that take place in the library for example. Maybe an author comes to the library to speak, and those who missed it could watch the video on Youtube. Or how about using it for tutorials on searching the catalog or requesting ILL materials.

I saw some awesome ways that museums for example are making use of Youtube. One such museum would be the Smithsonian's Natural History Museum. They have their own Youtube channel, as do the other Smithsonian Museums. The video that I'll share below is about the, "Race: Are We So Different," exhibition.

The exhibition referred to in this video is made up of art work from elementary to high school aged students and will be on display at the Natural History Museum until January 2012. If you're in DC in the coming months, check it out. I visited the National Mall over the summer and visited the National Museum of American History. It in itself was huge, so we never made it to the Natural History Museum.

To find out more about the exhibition, visit there Web site:


  1. love your ideas for uses of youtube in the library. it's always struck me as one of the more wild-and-carefree elements of the web 2.0 universe, full of whimsy and a little danger and therefore more unsuitable to 'official' uses than social networking or podcasts; but a well maintained youtube account could be a very powerful tool for a library system, as you say. tutorials for the win!

  2. I sometimes think of museums as old fashioned. It's interesting how many institutions are taking advantage of the web in new ways to provoke debate subjects such as racism. For someone who is consistently poor I probably won't be able to visit the Smithsonian in the near future but watching through YouTube videos and the internet I'll at least be able to see some of what's going on there.

  3. Thanks for the comments guys!

    @AndAlex, I often wonder about safety with the Youtube videos though. In terms of children's use of them. My kids have been making some awesome iMovies that I'm sure they'd love to post on Youtube but I'm not so sure the entire world needs or wants to see them.

    @Ryan, I know what you mean about being low on the green (that was a little corny!) but save up when you can and head on down. All of the Smithsonian museums are FREE! Of course, there's always lodging and gas money but the museums are free. So is the zoo and many other attractions and monuments. But yes, the videos are so useful and allow us to peek in on what's going on.

  4. The Youtube video is larger than this column! I must figure out how to adjust the size. If anyone knows how, please do share.

  5. Yay I figured out how to adjust the size of the Youtube video. Thanks to learning a little bit about html code-cool beans!