Podcasting the classroom

I’ve had a plan in my mind for a while now to create podcasts of student work with my Senior classes  but until today it hadn’t come to fruition. The task I set was quite a simple one as it was the first time me or the students had tried it.

The students were required to review some information from our First Aid course and create a script of the important information that would help someone else deal with a casualty in different environments. Students then had to record the podcast. Our school computers have a free audio recording program called Audacity on them which allowed the students to capture their work and then export it as an Mp3. It was then uploaded through Moodle so that I had access to each file. Students used headphones with a microphone attached but if using a laptop students could just use the in built microphone but you might want to let them out into the wild so that they don’t pick up the background noise of 15-20 students all speaking at once!

My plan is to upload this to ‘Podomatic‘ – another free site for hosting podcasts that the students can use to download from through itunes. That’s the plan anyway, however, at present I’m having issues with uploading because I can’t download the latest version of Flash – Argh! (I’ll be on to our helpdesk first thing tomorrow!!)

The success of todays lesson though, was the engagement of the students to the task. Not only did they work quickly to get their scripts written, but they recorded and re-recorded their podcasts after listening and reviewing what they’d said to see could improve them. I think students could also review each others recordings and give constructive feedback on what else they could include, how they could make it better

However, I think the greatest potential of a project like this is for my Stage 6 (HSC) students writing revision podcasts. If i can get students creating podcasts regularly of sections of the units we’re studying and uploading them to podomatic, students should be able to subscribe to the podcasts via Itunes. This will mean that come the end of Year 12, they will have digital study notes that will allow students to use them any where, any time. That means they can listen to study notes in the car, on the bus or train or more importantly when they are out walking or exercising at the gym – which from a PE teachers point of view has to be a good thing!