SMARTBoard: Inserting YouTube and digital video files into your SMART Notebook presentations

Quick overview: A step-by-step video tutorial on how to convert videos from YouTube or other digital video files (i.e – videos from a digital camera) so that they can be inserted into your SMART Notebook lessons.

How can it be used in the classroom? If you have access to a SMARTBoard in your classroom, you now have an alternative to dragging in a bulky TV with outdated VHS cassettes or DVDs to support your lesson. Instead, why not think about inserting pedagogically relevant digital videos from YouTube (or other sources) directly into your SMART Notebook presentations? These could be videos of current events or clips that best relate to your students’ interests.

What are the advantages to this approach? One of the advantages to embedding videos directly into a SMART Notebook presentation is that you can showcase videos from blocked sites, such as YouTube.  However, even if YouTube isn’t blocked in your centre, you won’t have to worry about finding the video at a later date or if you’ll have a fast enough Internet connection to play back it back smoothly. This is all possible because the embedded videos are stored locally (i.e – not on the Internet) within the Notebook presentation. In addition, digital videos have the potential to be more current that what you’d find on an older DVD or VHS cassette.

ICT Note: At this point in time, the SMART Notebook software only accepts Flash Video files (.FLV) and will not accept any other types of video files. This Blog posting focuses on how to convert video files into .FLV format with the Zamzar website.

Video Tutorial: This video demonstrates how to convert digital videos so that they can be embedded into presentations created with the SMART Notebook software:

0 thoughts on “SMARTBoard: Inserting YouTube and digital video files into your SMART Notebook presentations

  1. If you download a decent codec pack – K-Lite basic for example you can actually import/drag most video formats into Notebook – when you do this you will see an info bar as Notebook actively converts the video file into FLV

    • Hi Jamie, thanks for the heads up. I didn’t know that, but that would be awesome if it works. I’ll try that out on my PC when I’m back at home as I have all the FFDSHOW codecs installed on my home PC. My work machine is a Mac.

  2. I am trying to insert a FLV file into the SmartNoteBook, and it shows up on the page, but the time line is a scrolling green and grey bar, as if it was loading, but it seems stuck there. The videos are smaller files, only 1-2 minutes. Any suggestions?

    • Are you on the Mac or PC version of SMART Notebook? I find the Mac version of SMART Notebook can be a little more picky with Flash files. Other from that, I do have a couple of suggestions.

      1) Whether you are on PC or Mac: Make sure you are using the latest version of SMART Notebook and Adobe Flash Player. Make sure to update both. Did you try inserting the video on another computer with the SMART Notebook?
      2) If the FLV video is originally from YouTube, then try use to re-download the video from YouTube and re-insert in SMART Notebook.
      3) If the FLV video is not from YouTube, use Handbrake to re-convert the video into an FLV video which may help the video file play nicer with the SMART Notebook. (

      Keep me posted!

  3. HELP! 🙁

    “Sorry, we can’t get that video
    At the request of Google we have had to remove support for the downloading of YouTube videos on Zamzar.

    You can still use Zamzar to convert hundreds of other file formats and we promise to continue introducing cool new features such as the ability to convert files by email.”

    – any other ideas? I am working at a school where I cannot connect to the internet in order to show videos when teaching so I would love to put them into my Smart files.

    • Hi Tracy, thanks for writing. I do have a possible solution for you!

      Instead of using Zamzar, use the site named “” to download the videos for the SMARTBoard. It’s actually a lot easier and gives better results too!

      1) Go to YouTube and find the video you want. Copy the URL.
      2) Go to and paste the URL into the download box.
      3) It might prompt you with a Javascript warning. Click that you allow it to access your browser.
      4) It will present you with a list of files to download. If you see a “FLV” file, then you can download it and simply insert it into the SMART Notebook software since that’s the format it takes for video files. That’s it!
      5) Let me know if it works (or not!) if not I’ll pass along another solution.

      Here’s the Blost post on Keepvid I put up a while back. I believe I made a small video to explain the process:

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