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Screencastify: Simple, easy, solid

Screencastfavicon Teachers, if you’re a screencaster, I’d like you to try out Screencastify. It’s easier and simpler than Jing or Camtasia, and it’s the first screencasting software that works on Chromebooks.

It’s a Chrome app, so you need to use Google Chrome, but if that’s OK with you, Screencastify then becomes an extension that’s easy to access.

Screencastify takes about five seconds to set up. (You need to allow it to record your voice). Then, just click on the extension, then on “Start Recording,” and you’re off and running.

Here’s an example (about 50 seconds)!

After you’re finished, the screencast is saved directly in the extension window. You can upload your screencast immediately to YouTube (public or private) or export it as a file.

The only weakness is that it doesn’t directly save to a URL. It would be amazing, for example, if a copy of the YouTube URL were saved to the clipboard so I could email or text a student my screencast.

This would save a huge amount of time, especially because I know many English teachers who like to screencast their essay comments.

If you try out Screencastify, please let me know what you think in the comments. Meanwhile, maybe you’ll see more screencasts on Iserotope in the near future! favicon


  1. Laura Hawkins

    Hmm, that’s interesting, and good for feedback of digital essays. Unfortunately, I do a lot of screencasting using my Smartboards, and right now their website says “It has experimental desktop capturing support.” Which doesn’t sound solid enough for my needs.

    • Mark Isero

      Hey Laura, thanks for your comments. Maybe Screencastify is solid but not “solid enough.” You’re very right about its limitations: (1) Only 1 tab right now; (2) Not so good at exporting to file. Definitely not good (yet) for roaming around the Internet.

  2. Tom Capuano

    Mark – regarding the exported file. There’s no file extension. Is there a file extension you’ve used so your computer can recognize the file and play it?

    • Mark Isero

      Dear Tom, thank you. You raise a very important question. On my MacBook Pro, the screencast came out as a .webm file and played with no problems, but you’re right: Things are different on the Chromebook. This is limiting — and would force us to upload to YouTube on a Chromebook. Not ideal. What’s good news, though, is that the developer seems to be be making changes to improve the product. Let me know if you find anything that’s easy as a workaround to this issue. Thank you again.

  3. Tom Capuano

    Well, I don’t claim it’s an “easy” workaround, but I ended up using a free online video converter. Took 2-3 mins, then I had a nice .mp4 file.

  4. Jamie Chamberlain

    I really like the idea of using this product to have my Spanish students record themselves doing a presentation (rather than taking days of class time), but I notice that it takes forever to save to a google drive, then it is also hard to download or open quickly. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Mark Isero

      Hi Jamie. Are you students using Chromebooks (or something else)? Do you want them to record a presentation at school or at home?

      My hunch is that Screencastify isn’t improving quickly enough. My dream of using it with students on Chromebooks isn’t really materializing because of what you mention — that it takes forever. I’m thinking of returning to Jing.

Please share your brilliant insights!