Podcasts and Digital Stories

Photo Taken from BuildFire

Listening to a podcast is very new to me. When I was in school there was nothing like incorporating a podcast into the lessons and I think that’s really sad because there’s so much students can gain from it. The benefits from having students listen in to a interesting podcast can improve our students’ listening skills. Which is one of the essential components of the new education mandates, and by using audio in the classroom it can be an effective way to promote listening. So many of our students zone out because of a boring topic. After reading the article “What Teens are Learning from Serial and Other Podcasts,” I was drawn in. “Serial” would be a podcast I would be willing to listen to because of the adrenaline and mystery that stories like this gives me. I like the fact that the podcast doesn’t spend 30 minutes talking to one person, but rather bouncing around with a lawyer, say, then with a former classmate and then a detective. Student’s don’t want to sit in their chairs and listen to an hour long documentary on say Shakespeare. This kills their creativity and student’s end up feeling like zombies. “Serial” I don’t think would be appropriate for early grade levels because I think information might be too gory for them. This podcast is perfect for the older grades and the thing about it is it doesn’t just cover one common core standard. For example, it can cover geography by using Google maps to find the streets incidents took place.

Photo Taken from The Digital Writing & Research Lab

At first the thought of a podcast turned me off. I didn’t think there would be so many benefits from having students listen to an interesting podcast. This mindset I had could’ve been developed from not having the opportunity when I was in school to listen in on one. It was mostly here’s an hour long movie that we will watch over the span of two days and then you will have a report to do. BORING! What draws students into doing a twelve page report on a movie? Nothing. So why are we still doing our lessons this way? With most of these podcasts that were referenced there are assignments and structured lesson plans that can go along with the podcast. I will be taking advantage of these resources once I step into my classroom.

Photo Taken from The Odyssey Online

Digital stories are also a great tool. Digital storytelling will teach students how to navigate the writing and creative process, including brainstorming, constructing unique voices, narrating, and perhaps most importantly, structuring arguments in a compelling and logical manner. In the article “Teacher’s Guide to Digital Storytelling” the author gave 8 steps on how to incorporate digital storytelling into lesson ideas. All of the 8 are doable and a great way for students to learn a lot of technology skills.

podcast - internet broadcasting concept
Photo Taken from Helping Writers Become Authors

The podcast I listened in on is from BAM Radio Network – Every Classroom Matters, which has many informational and personal podcasts for educators. If you have some time you should go listen to a couple of the personal learning experiences. Another interesting podcast I found for educators was Talks with Teachers – Inspiring Ideas for Better Teaching . This podcast lets you hear the stories from teachers and their struggles that they’ve faced and how their teaching style changed over time. Another great podcast!

Out of the three latest digital stories I took a lot away from The Meaning of Life. The music that went with this story made me feel that what I was listening to was powerful information. This digital story makes the viewer question what is important in their lives. The other two digital stories I listened to were Run Your World and Me and Coaching Story.

This week was full of great information that I didn’t know was out there let alone that teachers are using these types of tools in their classrooms.


2 thoughts on “Podcasts and Digital Stories”

  1. What a great job of breaking down the information, and I would agree with you that using podcasts in the classroom is going to be really beneficial. I am most certainly going to use them, and in fact today at work one of the teachers that I work with is using them for her chemistry class. It was so cool to see what the students thought of them, and how well they interact with them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I do see the benefits of using podcasts in the classroom for most subjects. I am still struggling with using them in my math classroom because of the lack of relevance. I think they would just be used for a break from math instead of supplemental information to the lesson or as the lesson itself. I think elementary teachers could absolutely benefit from these as they do stretch across multiple disciplines as you mentioned.

    Liked by 1 person

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