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Podcasting at School by Kristin Fontichiaro

Written by Linda Biondi
August 13, 2010

For a novice Podcaster like me who has never used podcasting in the classroom, the book, Podcasting at School, is a must to read.

I always thought that I was fairly techno savvy. After all, I had six working computers in the classroom; students published their writing pieces on the computer and created PowerPoints; and we even dabbled in a classroom blog. However, I realized that I was not taking advantage of what my students had to offer and I was not preparing them to be literate learners in today’s world.

Sure, I was doing a great job teaching the core subjects—Readers and Writers Workshop, hands –on science and math, and social studies in such as way that the students wanted to learn more about their country. However, after taking time to look at my classroom through a reflective and critical eye, I realized I needed to open the door to new ventures in technology. Hence….Podcasting.

Ms. Fontichiaro writes a very comprehensive, easy to read book about Podcasting basics and ideas for teaching and learning. It begins with the impact of podcasting on student learning and then moves on to discussing the “how tos” of podcasting — software and hardware options,  recording equipment, and free or inexpensive podcast hosting sites online.

She continues with practical suggestions on how to launch podcasting in your school by encouraging the reader to establish a Professional Learning Community with interested colleagues. Practical management procedures are discussed, such as establishing a reservation/sign-out system and how to gain administrative support.  The final section contains lesson plans that can be easily adapted for any grade level or subject area such as:

  • Field trip audio tours with soundscapes
  • Mnemonic raps
  • Radio broadcasts
  • Oral history projects

So … Now is the time to toss out the excuses of “I don’t know where to begin” and dispel the myths such as you need an iPod to podcast. Now is the time to collaborate with colleagues in a technological movement which will motivate your students and YOU!  If you need some help along the way, Podcasting at School  by Kristin Fontichiaro is the perfect guide book.

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