Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Podcasts We Recommend

The following are podcasts the JHU MCPS cohort recommends for educators.  Please check them out and add your own suggestions!


Matt W said...

Well, i listened to my first podcast. Being a math teacher, i thought i would choose a math podcast. I chose to listen to the "Math Dude Quick and Dirty Tips to Make Math Easier". This podcast was located on iTunes and was free. I found that the Podcast sounded great. It was professional quality, There was not much difference between the podcast and a show that you would listen to on the radio. I found the show to be very informative with lots of neat ideas for making math easier. However, I think it would be difficult for students to pick up his tricks when they can't actually see him modeling them. I am a visual learner, so it is tough for me to imagine my students picking up his tricks when they can't see them. I am pretty sure that he also has a videocast or a YouTube video of his tricks as well.

I think the idea of the podcast is a great one for schools. Imagine teachers being able to put their lectures on a podcast so that students who were absent or students who did not fully understand the lesson can go back and listen to the lecture. I also think it would be a great idea for schools to relay school news and notes.

I would like to try and create a podcast. However, i usually don't like hearing my voice. So, after i produce the podcast, i might not listen to it. :-)

ccelli16 said...

The podcast I subscribed to is called “2 Minute Toner” from iTunes. I chose to subscribe to this podcast because it is a weekly video podcast that demonstrates various exercises in proper form. I liked this especially because each podcast is so short and because it has such an extensive list of episodes to view. The short duration of each podcast is great because I can get the information I need very quickly. I can see myself using this podcast for personal use and for use with my students. Say I am starting a unit on balance and weight transfer with my students and I want to show them some new challenges. It would be much more interesting for my students if I were to pull up one of the five 2-minute episodes that show the correct form for each challenge. I also can see using this for my own use if I am interested in learning a new exercise for various muscle groups. This could keep me motivated at the gym and can serve as a great resource each week as each new episode is posted.

Jessica said...

Like Matt, this was my first ever podcast. I have an iPod so podcasting was very easy, quick, and hassel-free. I subscribed to "An Idom a Day" and "Brain Stuff." I was looking for something that I can use in the the classroom. These two podcasts offer interestings facts that I can share with my students. "An Idiom a Day" is great because it defines and explains how the idiom is used. Idioms usually have an interesting background and is not literally translated. Whenever I have a couple minutes during the day, I think it will be fun to share the idiom with my kids. "Brain Stuff" is a podcast from They answer interesting questions like "why do most zippers have YKK witten on the pull tab?" This podcast will also provide fun facts that will be great to share with my students. It will inform not only my students but me as well to know how things work! We all know that teachers don't have an answer to everything; but this podcast could help us out a little. :)

Matt said...

Finally, something I have a little more experience with. I started listening to podcasts a year or 2 ago and have found most of them to be very educational. Some of my favorites are "Behind The Bar Show, Beer School, Photography 101, Vegan A Go-Go, and the Wine Spectator Video" podcasts. As far as educational podcasts for teaching students goes, like the other Matt I checked out "Math Dude", and found it to be helpful, but it would be greatly enhanced by the addition of video.
Some of you may like "What You Missed In History Class." While it may not be that relevant for use in your elementary classes, it's great for replenishing your Jeopardy knowledge. It's run by "", which can be found on itunes. While you're there, I also recommend the podcasts by Discovery Networks. You can find them under the Featured Providers section in the bottom right hand column.

I have thought about creating a podcast in which I sing to my students about different math, science, and social studies facts, but I'm not sure I can write music well enough to pull it off. I could probably parody something, but I'd also rather not get arrested for copyright infringement.

Beth Poss said...

Oh I am going to have to check out the "What I Missed in History Class" podcast, for my middle schoolers!

David said...

Like Matt and Jessica, this was my first experience with podcasts. Although I use iTunes all the time to organize my music and sync it to my iPhone, I had never taken the time to explore what was out there in terms of podcasts. There sure are podcasts on almost any topic. I decided to subscribe to the Studio 203 podcast by Mrs. Bently’s Class. I was easily able to subscribe through iTunes. The podcasts can also be accessed at I selected this podcast because it is a great example of how simple podcasts could be created and utilized in the elementary classroom. In each episode, students perform a short skit to teach a different writing technique. Techniques such as commas, homophones, and similes are covered. Although the podcasts were created by fourth graders, my second graders would definitely benefit from listening to them. I think they would really enjoy it too. I already have a listening center in my room. It would be great if I had some iPods, but I could also just have my students listen on the computer. It’s amazing how students can actually teach other students across the world through podcasts. I thought it would be complicated to create your own podcast, but after listening to Will Richardson’s podcast, it sounds like something any class can do.

Matt W said...

Matt, you should totally create some songs for math/science. I think the geekier (is that even a word?) the better. Seriously, i think kids would really enjoy it.

Geoff said...

Hi all-

Well, this was the first time I have really ever listened to a podcast. Every year the US Army Band, Pershing's Own, holds a conference at Fort Myer called the Eastern Trombone Workshop. There are vendors selling music, accessories, mouthpieces, services, instruments (new and used) and all sorts of trombone related items. It runs from a Wednesday to Saturday in March, and there are lectures and master classes related to trombone playing held throughout the four days.

I was unable to attend in person this year, but they recently added the live podcasting to the lectures, classes, and concerts. I was able to listen to several of the topics through the podcasting including orchestral playing tips, small ensemble playing, and jazz playing. The people who presented the information were absolutely top notch and communicated their points very well.

I agree with Matt W, however, and think that for some students, this may not be a good route for them to take in learning material. Some students, as Matt said, are visual learners, and need to see what is happening to be able to grasp the concepts presented. I can be this way, but I also can read things about topics and be able to understand them.

I think that the podcast can be a great tool. Looking around I don't see very many students that don't have some sort of MP3 player or iPod in their inventory. Students could use the podcasts as review material, to re-listen to a lecture that they didn't quite understand, and to hear the topic from a different perspective than the teacher gave.

One of the biggest problems I see from a technical standpoint is that if you are trying to listen to a podcast live, you will run into blips and gaps in the material if you and the podcaster don't have high speed internet connections. This happened to me a few times with the podcasts I listened to, and was really an annoyance more than detracting from the material.

Rebecca said...

I have not downloaded music and videos for years. Searching for quality podcasts were excruciating as I was Google searching. I finally caved and decided to download the iTunes. It was my first time using it, and it was difficult for me to navigate around it. I tried using the diagram in Richardson’s book to no avail. Once I found “Education” on the drop-down list of search categories, I was able to get the hang of it. Finding interesting podcasts for my personal use became so easy, but finding quality educational ones for K-12 was still challenging.

I like the concept of “60 Seconds Civics” and see how this can be beneficial for students who might have difficulty listening to lengthier podcasts. I subscribed to “CNN News for Students”, which I think would definitely be useful to use in any classroom. It is very similar to the regular CNN with the exception of the occasional teenage jargon that is sprinkled throughout the 10 minute podcast. CNN for Students also features topics that would capture the attention of the student population (ex. prom, summer jobs). It is a good source that can initiate meaningful discussions and connection to the local, national, and world community. Vocabulary frontloading will be necessary.