Saturday, October 22, 2011

Podcasting With Students

Podcasting With Students
What is a podcast? Podcasting is the 21st century version of radio shows. With podcasting, you can listen to radio programs or events whenever and wherever you choose. Podcasts are MP3 audio files that are automatically downloaded to your personal computer, and then transferred to an iPod or other MP3 player using a podcasting application.
Creating podcasts in the classroom has many educational benefits, including strengthening skills in research, writing, and collaboration — and podcasting is easy to do. The benefits of podcasting  relate very well to good language learning principles. By making podcasts, students practice the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing  by:
  • listening to their recordings as they review the quality of their work
  • practicing and rehearsing their speaking before being happy with a final version
  • reading and reviewing their scripts
  • planning and writing their scripts in the first place as the basis of their podcast
What do you need?
Creating a podcast is fairly simple. You will need an audio recording program for recording your podcasts. Two, free and easy to use programs are Wavepad and Audacity. Both programs must be downloaded and installed on your computer. Both programs are very easy to use. After the podcast has been recorded and edited it will need to be uploaded to a service like PodBean Podcast Hosting that can make it live to an online audience. 
Tips for podcasting with students:
Before creating a podcast it is a good idea to get parent permission since these podcasts will be online and available to a world wide audience. A model permission slip is available for download in the resource area on the right. Students who participate in podcasts should not give their names, especially if their school is identified on the podcast host page.Keep in mind that creating a podcast is often a long term project depending on how much you plan to record and edit. Be prepared for it to take a while to get a complete project complete from beginning to final publishing online.
Podcasting Ideas:
1. Students write and record their own podcast show.
2. Book talks and book reviews
3. Students perform and record Reader's Theater
4. Student or teacher created tutorials on any subject.
For an example of some student podcasts visit my class podcast site Room 29 Online.
Visit The Teacher's Cabinet website for podcasting resources and printable handouts to plan and produce a podcast with your students.