Podcast = anytime learning

Ever since I got my first iPod (back in the pre-smartphone era), I have watched and listened to many podcasts. The nice thing about podcasts is that you can listen and watch anytime anywhere, for instance when cycling to work, like I used to do when I still worked in Wageningen. My most favourite podcast back then was the BBC food programme, which often provided me with facts, trends and innovations about food production, that I could immediately use in class or inspired me to design a new ESP lesson about. These days everyone has easy access to podcasts on or off-line on their devices, so no reason to ignore this instructive and entertaining medium.ipodfamily

What is interesting about listening to podcasts for me, is the fact that although I am not an auditive learner at all, I have learned and remembered a lot from listening to podcasts. I mostly listen to podcasts in English and I enjoy being immersed in the language in this way, often enjoying the accentstacked_logo_175x175_croppeds just as much as the content of the programme. But apparently this content is usually so interesting to me that I remember it and use it in my teaching, for instance. For your pupils it may very well be a great way to learn, especially if they are auditive learners. There are many interesting podcasts available online and there is even a primary school teacher who has designed special walking lessons. If you are interested in finding out how this works in practice, check The Walking Classroom here.

Podcasts I have recently discovered are Don Zuidermans podcasts. Don Zuiderman is a colleague from Utrecht who teaches at the Pabo. His podcasts are interviews with people who are into learning and teaching with technology. So far I have listened to about five of his interviews and I have picked up some interesting facts and ideas to explore further. For instance, one of the interviewees describes an app she uses for formative assessments, in which her math students can actually draw, produce language, etc. It is called Go Formative. I have not had much time to explore it much further than looking at the website, but it looks as if you can create exercises fairly easily and assess your pupils on their progress. On the site you see some examples for literature as well, comparing characters for example, and it looks more elaborate than Socrative which is a simpler way to test learners. It provides more insight into your learners progress and their needs than getting answers to closed questions, which makes it very interesting to me. This website is definitely worth further exploration, so by all means check it out yourself. You may want to use it for your TELL Design Assignment, which would be a great way for me to see if it works the way I expect it to work!

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