I recently started listening to podcasts while driving to work and in the gym. Theres so many brilliant podcasts available mostly free of charge! While listening to one of my favourites ’50 Things that Made the Modern Economy”; I started thinking about how I could use it in the classroom – I think children would be fascinated to learn about how the elevator, shipping containers, the iPhone, batteries and air conditioning have changed the way we live. In this blogpost you’ll find some suitable podcasts for children along with ideas on how to create your own podcast with the children in your class.
What is a podcast?
A podcast is a digital audio file made available on the internet.
Where to source podcasts
- Podcasts are readily available to download from the internet. (You can download them directly from websites to your computer)
- At the moment I get my podcasts through iTunes. Other apps include Downcast and Pocket Casts.
- Brains On
- Tumble Science Podcast for Kids
- But Why? A podcast for Curious Kids
- Story Pirates
- Story Nory – Stories for Kids
- Classics for Kids
- The 15 best podcasts for kids (Early Childhood Education Centre)
- 18 Choices from Public Radio (Poynter)
- The 15 Best Podcasts for Kids that Adults will Like too (Fatherly)
- 50 Things that Made the Modern Economy from BBC World Service (Not All Podcasts are suitable for primary aged pupils)
Create your own podcasts
You will need;
- A microphone
- Mac users can use Garage Band or Audacity (free download)
- PC users can use Audacity (free download)
Some ideas for podcasts;
- Interviews; a visitor to the school, a parent/grandparent, a teacher, a student
- Our Class News; every week the children can record some key events from the week
- A class trip; children can share the highlights of a school tour
- Facts about ________; children can record interesting facts about a topic they learned in school.
- Project work; children can record information about countries/ science experiments etc. (Link with SESE)
- Newspaper reports; Imagine you are a reporter during the second world war – share your experiences (Link with Drama and History)
- Music; record the class singing/playing an instrument together.
- The children should plan what the podcast will be about. It might be helpful for children to read from a script (link with Literacy – writing).
Editing the podcast
- Add an introduction or conclusion – this could be a quick overview of the podcast or a jingle
- Add sound effects
- Delete unwanted sounds (coughs/laughing etc.)
Sharing the podcast
This can be the tricky part. Make sure to check your school policy on e-safety or with your principal before sharing the podcast online.
Some options for sharing;
- School website (where parents can download and listen to it)
- Google Drive (the link to the podcast can then be shared with parents)
- Dropbox (the link to the Dropbox Account can be shared with parents)
- When listening to podcasts – check the content to ensure that it is child friendly and appropriate for the age of the pupils in your class.
- Check school policy before uploading podcasts to the internet
- What are the benefits of podcasting in the classroom?
- Belb.org.uk; Using Podcasts in the Classroom
- Ed Tech Teacher
- The Value of Using Podcasts in the Classroom (Atlantic.com)
- Teach Hub; Technology in the Classroom; How, Why to use podcasts?
- Podcasting in Education; What are the benefits?
- Reading Rockets; Creating Podcasts with your students
- Read Write Think; The Nuts and Bolts of creating Podcasts