What is a podcast?

A podcast is a digitally created audio recording that is shared with others.

Terry James Resources for the 'how-to' of podcasting in the classroom:podcast.jpeg

Podcasting at School by Kristin Fontichiaro
Podcasting for Teachers: Using a New Technology to Revolutionize Teaching and Learning by Kathleen P. King and Mark Gura
How to sites for podcasting: Nathan Toft and Jane Smith http://portablepd.ca
Very comprehensive site of how-tos for mobile learning and podcast making: http://learninginhand.com/podcasting/
Wes Fryer on Podasting


Larry Mishaw, a grade 7 & 8 teacher and I will be embarking on a project to have students learn how to create a podcast related to their history class.

Imagine that you could go back in time and interview one of the historical figures that we've studied during this unit. Who would it be? What would you ask them? Try to find out how their lives compare to our current Canadian society...

Students will develop an interview of a historical figure involved in their unit and role play an interview with them in pairs. You will need to demonstrate and understanding of the themes and personalities of the period, as well how that might compare to our lives today or even how the person might have had an impact on our lives today.

We are starting with these overall Curriculum Expectations in mind and will be choosing some to be assessed:

History:
  • identify some themes and personalities from the period, and explain their relevance to contemporary Canada.
  • compare methods of conflict resolution in both historical and contemporary situations.
  • communicate the results of inquiries for specific purposes and audiences, using media works, political cartoons, oral presentations,
    written notes and descriptions, drawings, tables, charts, and graphs (e.g., create captions for political cartoons of
    the time);

Oral Language:
  • use speaking skills and strategies appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes
Writing:
  • generate, gather, and organize ideas and information to write for an intended purpose and audience;

Media Literacy:
  • identify some media forms and explain how the conventions and techniques associated with them are used to create meaning;
  • create a variety of media texts for different purposes and audiences, using appropriate forms, conventions, and techniques;
  • reflect on and identify their strengths as media interpreters and creators, areas for improvement, and the strategies they found most helpful in understanding and creating media texts

Drama and Dance:
  • research and dramatize material from various sources (e.g., material from autobiographies, history books);



Examples of Podcasts:

Roadrunner Radio http://rowland.podomatic.com/player/web/2008-12-17T17_13_57-08_00
Author Interviews: http://papulkas.com/education/Podcasts/silverbirch/silverbirch.htm
Coulee Kids http://wiki.lacrosseschools.org/groups/couleekids/
Portable PD http://www.portablepd.ca/
Good section on podcasting http://literacymatters.wikispaces.com/

Sound Recording Resources:

We'll be using Audacity an open-source software that allows students to record and edit their podcasts.
Watch a 15 minute screencast tutorial to learn how to use Audacity from Tony Vincent:
http://azk12.org/downloads/blogimages/Audacity_Screencast.mov


Here is a great website for help with Audacity http://www.people.vcu.edu/~cjbaedke/iWeb_Audacity/Audacity/Welcome.html
How to record Audacity - Record HO.pdf
How to edit recordings Audacity EdTech - Editing HO.pdf
How to clean up noise in a recording Noise Removal HO.pdf
More online tutorials about Audacity http://audacity.sourceforge.net/help/
How to download and install the Lame Encoder http://audacity.sourceforge.net/help/faq?s=install&item=lame-mp3

Need a sound booth for recording? Here's one idea for a DIY version: http://www.instructables.com/id/Portable-Mini-Vocal-Booth

Finding Sound and Music Files:

http://www.freesound.org
http://www.partnersinrhyme.com/
http://dig.ccmixter.org/
http://www.soundsnap.com (not free)
Royalty Free Music http://incompetech.com/m/c/royalty-free/
Flash Kit-Sound FX http://flashkit.com/soundfx/
Bumper Music http://bumpermusic.blogspot.com/
Four Bees Free Music http://www.fourbees.com/fourbees/audelm.asp

Lessons:

Day 1

Engage and Activate Prior Knowledge:
Showing students examples of podcasts. What are they? How are they similar to other kinds of media we use? How are they different?
Shared:
Organizer that outlines elements of a podcast (create it together with smart ideas)
Organizer that outlines the kind of writing/interview project that students will be creating (create it together using smart ideas)
Should share a rubric today or at beginning of next day. How will the project be assessed? (Teacher, peer, self)
Small group/Partner work:
Time for partner work with the organizer to plan their project.

Day 2

Learning how to use Audacity
Whole group demo (15 minute screencast by Tony Vincent - see link above) followed by individual/partner work to try it in the lab.
  • Attaching a microphone and adjusting audio settings (with our Network there are 3 issues - make sure microphone is not muted by double-clicking the volume button in the task bar, make sure that Real Tech Audio is set in Preferences within Audacity, make sure you plug in the mic before you launch Audacity)
  • Creating multiple tracks
  • Editing tracks (quick mix, taking out mistakes)
  • Importing music (finding and downloading copyright free music, looping, changing volume on parts of the track)

Day 3

Rehearsing narrations and beginning to produce the podcast

Day 4

Continued work editing and producing the podcast