Podbean Podcast

Travelers!

I have created my very own, very basic, podcast! This podcast is an introduction to what this blog is all about.
Now in the ‘making of’ my podcast I had to overcome two obstacles:

  1. The software to record the podcast; and
  2. The website to host the podcast.

The first one had been provided to us via our tutor Mr John Pearce for the purposes of discovering pod-casting. Full steam ahead I went using a program called:

Audacity┬« is free, open source software for recording and editing sounds. For those of you who haven’t stumbled across ‘open source software’ before, it means that if you a developer, you are allowed to use the source code and ‘play’ with it (taking into account the original developers rights if required).
 
Now Audacity wasn’t entirely easy to play with. The concept was simple enough, making the actual podcast – not so much. I didn’t have content, I had no idea what the point of the podcast was, and I had no motive for making one (other than for the class requirement). In light of all this, I decided to make an introduction podcast for my blog. What my aim was for the blog and who I am.
 
Travelers, I warn you in advance, it is my first ever podcast, and it’s not exactly ‘pretty’ or ‘perfect’ so bare with me!
 
The second hurdle, after the ‘making of’ my introduction podcast, became fairly easy. In my travels I discovered Podbean.

After playing around and loading my podcast to Podbean I hit a wall, not the real kind. I couldn’t see the potential of pod-casting in the classroom. That was a bit of a shock to the system. While I can understand the advantages as an educator, sharing ideas and concepts and resources, I couldn’t figure out what use this would be to my students, primary or secondary.
 
Usually I’m all for implementing technology into the classroom, but this has me stumped. Off I went on my adventure to see what the internet would help me discover and I came across an article written for exactly that Podcasting in the Classroom (PDF) by Marco Lazzari of the University of Bergamo. This gave me a little insight to what it may bring for secondary and high education, but what about primary education? My initial reaction was that the students are too young for a podcast to be of any value.
 
My travelers, I put it to you. Is there something I am missing? In what ways could a podcast be used in the elementary/primary classroom? What would our young learners get from a podcast?
 
Is it possible that the students could:

  • Creating their own podcasts with tips on internet safety;
  • Listen to a podcast to see how other people communicate information; or
  • Send a podcast to a buddy class about what they did in a lesson?

There are a few sites out there claiming that there are uses for a podcast in a classroom but I can’t find any instances or applications of it actually happening! My readers, can you help me out? Because I just can’t see this one.

 

Listen to my podcast here:

Skilful Skype

Hello travelers!

Today I want to bring your mind back to a subtle little program called Skype. You know it, right? Well today I want to introduce you to:

You read right! Now you can use Skype in your classroom. Brilliant! With Skype in the classroom you could…

  • collaborate on projects with classes across the globe;
  • have Q & A sessions with people of interest;
  • discover new cultures; or
  • meet new people!

Skype in the ClassroomIf you’re interested in the pro’s and con’s of Skype in the classroom – take a quick hop over to my website where I’ve previously listed the advantages and disadvantages.

I know the idea could possibly be a little overwhelming bare with me for a moment. I want you to think about all those ideas and excursions running around in your head that the budget or time won’t allow for… now I want you to think about the possibility of a Skype call instead… getting a little clearer?

What about all those second and third hand accounts via text books or information web pages that students skip over reading rather than try sort through all the tedious information amongst it? How about interviewing a first hand account? Now are you with me?

Skype in the classroom  breaks the barriers of what originally was an impossibility. Ask a buddy classroom what their usual day routine is or what their national holidays involve! Interview an scientist who is studying a volcano right now! Those four walls surrounding you are no longer solid. You can use your imagination, you can use Skype in the classroom!

Check out the video below for what Skype is really all about:

 

Below I’ve included a lesson plan which incorporates Google Earth and Skype in the Classroom. By all means, download a copy for future reference! It’s by no means perfect so feel free to ‘tweak’ it to suit your needs. It is just one of the many examples of how Skype can be used in the classroom.

If you have difficulties with Scribd, jump over to my website here where you can find the PDF and DOCX versions of the lesson plan to download as well.

Technology Lesson Plan