Creating Podcasts

Sherry Rankin from ACU
SCMLA 2013 notes
Technology in Language Education section.

There is a pressure to adopt technology.
Went into podcasting kicking and screaming.
But I was working on a distance learning scenario and intent was to make a podcast for every author.

Learned the hard way:
Don’t reference current events.
Don’t ask for discussion sections. When they change, the students panic.

Need to find a quiet place to make them.

Make podcasts to serve instead of class lectures.

How do I use the ones I’ve made and what is my guide for new podcasts?
1. Podcasts need to complement, not repeat.
Bring in texts I wouldn’t normally have a chance to cover.
Gain 3-4 weeks of class time by requiring them to watch/listen.
2. Podcasts work best for information. Classroom works best for synthesis and analysis.
The podcasts are all available on the internet.
I grade.
I help them to analyze and synthesize.

Types of podcasts:
1. history and culture
Can cover 2 weeks worth of information in 10 minutes–because very focused, planned out.
Refer back to the podcast during the literature discussion.
2. extended author bio
3. background of a particular piece of literature
For instance, if students need to understand Viking raids or the politics of aldermen, etc.
This is what I want to make.
4. genres I can’t get to
15th century podcast covers several genres–the cycle plays, for example.

3rd Principle for podcasts:
Students have intrinsic motivation to watch.
This is not ancillary material.
They need to see how it benefits them.
I use the podcasts to write the questions they have to answer for their literary analyses.
I give them an outline of the podcast to take notes on.

blog and podcast
Put a podcast on the blog and ask them to discuss it.
Students feel more comfortable discussing it on the blog.

Key: Be present as the teacher on the blog.
Be right on top of it for the first 24 hours, answering any questions, comments immediately.
The quality of the comments improve when you do this.

One simple clear image is good.
Be careful of font colors.
Use large fonts.
Don’t throw away the podcast scripts. These can be used to make quizzes.
Using a sound studio is a good idea.

Wish I had known: Don’t take yourself too seriously. Start with what you know and are already doing.

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