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Podcasting in the Classroom: How To

Currently, in my Electronic Publishing class we’ve been talking about podcasting. I realized this was a great tool for online education, and will be blogging about it for the next two weeks. This week, I’ll offer a quick how-to on making podcasts. Next week, I’ll elaborate on podcasting and it’s benefits in the classroom through a podcast of my own.

An quick, easy, and independent way for students to communicate ideas about their curriculum.

Podcasts: A quick, easy, and independent way for students to communicate ideas about their curriculum.

How to Make a Podcast in the Classroom

1) Have students write a script for their podcasts based around a topic in the curriculum.

Tip: The best kind of script is usually an outline of topics to be discussed. This makes the podcast more conversational, and interesting to listen too.

2) After approving their script, teach students how to record their podcast.

  • GarageBand=Create a “New Podcast Episode” in GarageBand. Choose the track you would like to record on (either Female voice or Male Voice), and then click on the record/pause button.

Remember: If you are using an external microphone, go to the GarageBand menu and choose “Preferences.” Then click the “Audio/MIDI” icon to chose what microphone to use for recording.

  • iMovie=Click on the Audio tab and use the record/pause button.

Remember: Make sure your settings reflect an external microphone as your input if you are using one.

  • Audacity=Click on the microphone icon in Audacity’s Meter toolbar to turn on monitoring. Push the Record button and start talking. When you finish recording, press the yellow square Stop button.

Remember: Connect your microphone to the microphone-in connection on the PC. Open the Audacity Preferences window from the File menu. On the Audio I/O tab, verify that your sound card is selected as the device for both playback and recording. In the Channels drop-down box under Recording, choose 1 (Mono), unless you are using two microphones.

3) Once they have a recording they are happy with, save the file.

Tip: Now is the time to make any edits to the podcast using the audio editing software you recorded the episode on. You can find podcast editing tutorials at the end of this entry.

4) Export (under the Share menu) your podcast and play it for the class, burn a CD, or post it online.

Podcasting Tutorials

Free Digital Sound Editing Software



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Google Docs: The Holy Grail of Online Applications

About two years ago I was working as a publicity intern for a boutique PR firm. It was there that I discovered the wonderful world of Google Docs. I never had to purchase MS Office, yet I still could reap the benefits of owning the Microsoft program.

Create documents, spreadsheets, and presentations online.

Google Docs: Create documents, spreadsheets, and presentations online.

What is Google Docs?

Google Docs is an online replacement for a word processor. In fact, it does everything a word processor can, but since it’s an online application, it also adds compelling perks!

By being an online application, Google Docs has the ability to share resources, collaborate on documents, store material online, and access work from any computer.

There’s nothing to download with Google Docs either. Users can access documents, spreadsheets, and presentations from any computer with an Internet connection and a standard browser. And the best part of all this, it’s free

Advantages of Google Docs

Since it’s the same familiar set-up as MS Office and affiliated word-processing programs, editing and creating is a cinch.

For a classroom environment, Google Docs is especially helpful. Multiple users who have been invited to access and share the document by it’s creator can view and make changes to it at the same time. Or, if the creator of the document (the teacher in this case) doesn’t want it to be updated by other users, he or she can easily control who sees the document, or simply un-publish it.

Although this may sound hectic, with multiple users updating the document at the same time, communication between users is actually easy. There’s an on-screen chat window for spreadsheets, and document revisions to show you exactly who changed what, and when.

Some More Advantages of Google Docs

One of the best parts about Google Docs is free storage. With Google Doc’s online storage and auto-save, losing work is never an option–no matter how terrible your luck is.

Users can upload existing files onto Google Docs too. Since Google Docs accepts the most popular file formats, including DOC, XLS, ODT, ODS, RTF, CSV, PPT, etc., users can export their entire library of work onto the web. Or, if the user creates a file in Google Docs, he or she can easily save the work to their own computer.

With all these files on Google Docs, organization is key. Luckily, a user can easily find documents by organizing them into folders, and searching for specific files via a search engine.

How Google Docs Assists with Online Learning

  • If a student or teacher is giving a presentation, anyone can automatically follow along with the presenter by opening up the presentation on Google Docs.
  • Multiple students can work on the same document, proving useful for group-related, and collaboration activities.
  • Cheaters can’t cheat, and teachers can remain in the loop of student progress since Google Docs keeps track of who updated what on the document, and when.
  • Google Docs is a painless way for students to make web pages, without learning anything too challenging.
  • Teachers and students can easily post the information they created or uploaded into Google Docs onto their blog.

Links to Check Out:

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