Thursday, October 25, 2012

Empowering Students One Podcast At a Time

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We have previously discussed about the effectiveness and usefulness of utilizing text publishing tools, such as wikis, collaborative software, and web apps that allow students to create digital stories. Text is not the only thing students can freely publish, they can also enhance their blogs and/or other publications or documents with audio and video. With the availability and easiness of use of free pod-casting tools, there was no reason why pod-casts (in the form of either video or audio) would not become part of the classroom settings and empower students with more tools to express themselves and their ideas. And as it turns out, according to Will Richardson, in his book Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and Other Powerful Web Tools for Classrooms, because of the easiness of the use of these tools, the possibilities of what to publish are endless and the projects can be as complex or as simple as one designs them to be.

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To give two examples of how pod-casts can be incorporated into the classroom: First, the yearbook class could prepare a series of video pod-casts on a documentary on the reflections and thoughts of the graduating 8th grade students, which not only can be uploaded to YouTube, a storage server (the school's or a free server such as,, or Gcast), or the classroom blog, but which could also be linked from the yearbook with a QR bar-code, which have grown so popular nowadays. Secondly, Students in 5th through 8th grade could record audio pod-casts on reflections, inferences, and synthesis of the different sections of their textbook units, such as history and/or science. These pod-casts could be created and posted easily on the Internet and if posted on a Blog, they could be used as a start up point for a discussion, students could ask any questions they have on a particular section and the rest of the students would be able to help them, answer their questions, explain the material in their words, and as a result, students will be teaching students. Also questions on the material covered could be prompted by the teacher and or other students in the form of comments to the original posts and students could be asked to discuss the answer to these and to formulate a final, complete answer for each.

Marco Cesar Saenz
Using Web Tools in the Classroom

Image 1, retrieved from:, on October 25, 2012.

Image 2, retrieved from: on October 25, 2012.

1 comment:

  1. Thinking about the yearbook staff and remembering how it was teaching it, I propose using podcasts or screencasts to have your current students teach next year's students how to use the programs, how to to take and edit pictures as well as what a good copy needs. It will save a lot of time next year and the students can create them as they actually do the work. It can then be used as a reference whenever a student has a question. The students will learn to be more independent and take charge of their learning.