Podcasting Resources

is the method of distributing multimedia files, such as audio programs or music videos, over the Internet using either the RSS or Atom syndication formats, for playback on mobile devices and personal computers. (Wikipedia, August 2, 2006) According to David Warlick,
  1. Somebody records audio information,
  2. Saves the information as an MP3 file & uploads it to the Internet, and
  3. People listen to the audio program using some audio player, either computer-based or a portable media player. (http://davidwarlick.com/wiki-warlick/index.php?title=Podcasting_for_Educators)
Additionally, true podcasts allow listeners to subscribe to them.

Resources about Podcasts

New York Times article about Podcasting: "Students and Teachers, From K to 12, Hit the Podcasts"
The best overview is from Podgrunt.

Listening to Podcasts

Podcast directories gather links to podcasts. David Warlick suggests these:
Podnova -- http://www.podnova.com
Podcast.net -- http://podcast.net/
Digital Podcast -- http://digitalpodcast.com/
Education Podcast Network -- http://epnweb.org/
Podcasting News -- http://www.podcastingnews.com/forum/links.php
Podcast Alley -- http://podcastalley.com/podcast_genres.php

Podcasts are often stored on blogs. Listen to these podcasts suggested for educators:
Teacher42 -- http://teach42.com
Room 208 -- http://bobsprakle.com/
Connect Learning -- http://onebighead.blogspot.com/
EdTech Musician -- http://aseymour.blogspot.com/
Radio Open Source -- http://www.radioopensource.org/
Connect Learning -- http://davidwarlick.com/connectlearning/
One Big Head -- http://onebighead.blogspot.com/
Education and Technology Today -- http://inst.cl.uh.edu/PodCasts/index.asp

How do you create a podcast?

First script your podcast, and then create your audiofile.

Scripting Your Podcast

1. Identify your purpose.
2. Be clear about the content that is being delivered. Are you publicizing an event? Exploring a topic? Explaining content?
3. If your podcast is designed for instruction, what standards will you cover?
4. If students are creating the podcast, do you have a rubric for assessment?
5. Use a graphic organizer, Word, or PowerPoint to write the script.

Using Audacity to Create Podcasts

You can create your audiofile easily. Mac users can do this with Garage Band. Audacity is an easy-to-use program that allows you to create an audiofile for your podcast.
Using Audacity to create podcasts is not at all complicated. The only challenge is to make sure that any file you are using is in mp3 format. Often tracks from cds are in other formats and they have to be converted. You have a few choices to do this.
Windows Media Player:
1. Select the track you want to use.
2. Click “rip.”
3. The program will place the converted file in your default music folder (usually in My Music).
Use a shareware program like Free Rip (available at http://www.mgshareware.com/frmmain.shtml).
You also can use iTunes to convert files.
1. Choose Edit > Preferences, then click the Advanced tab at the top of the window and click Importing.
2. Choose MP3 encoder from the Importing pop-up menu.
3. When you add songs to your library, they should come in as mp3 files.
Atomic Learning (http://www.atomiclearning.com) has a series of tutorials that does an excellent job of explaining how to use Audacity. Go to the website, enter the district username and password, and type “audacity” in the search box. Open the tutorials in the following order:
  1. Overview of Audacity
  2. What an example project looks like
  3. Understanding the rules of Audacity
  4. Understanding the Audacity window
  5. Importing files into Audacity
  6. Setting up Audacity to record directly into your computer
  7. Cutting, copying, and pasting selections
Alternatively, follow these steps:
  1. Make sure whatever music you are using is in mp3 format and available on your computer for import.
  2. Prepare your script for the podcast.
  3. If you’re using an external microphone for voice recording, plug it in so it’s ready.
  4. Open Audacity.
  5. Click on the menu selection “Project” tab.
  6. Select “Import Audio.”
  7. Locate your file. After you select it, it will download directly into Audacity. You now have your background music ready to use.
  8. Now you’re ready to add voice. Pull out your script and get comfortable.
  9. Click on the red record button and talk away.
  10. If you place your cursor at the beginning of the voice track, you can hear what you said by clicking on the green play button. However, you will also hear the music tracks unless you mute them. You can do that by clicking on the “mute” button to the left of the track.
  11. Now you can play around with the music and voice. You might want to begin with just music and ease into the voice portion, and add some music at the end. To do that, select a portion of the music track by clicking, dragging to the spot where you want to end, and choosing “copy” from the edit pull-down menu or right clicking and selecting copy.
  12. Place your cursor on the spot in the voice track where you want to place your music. Right click and select paste, or use the pull-down edit menu.
  13. If you want the music to fade out, select it, choose the “effect” pull-down menu, and make your choice.
  14. When you play back, make sure you mute the original music selection so you only hear the music/voice combination.
  15. When you’re finished, delete the music tracks that you’re no longer using.
  16. Save your project by exporting it as an mp3 file. Choose the file pull-down menu, select “Export as mp3.” Select your location, name the file, and click “save.”
  17. You now have your file to use to create your podcast.

Create Your Podcast

(courtesy of Henry Chu)
1. Create your MP3 file using Audacity or Garage Band.
2. Upload the file to a web host--a place on the web that allows the file to have a unique url.
3. Create a blog at http://www.blogger.com.
4. Link the MP3 file to the blog with the file's url.
5. Create the podcast feed (an atom newsfeed is provided by Blogger).
6. Create an RSS 2.0 feed by going to http://www.feedburner.com.
7. Publish the podcast on iTunes using the FeedBurner burned url.

To Do: Podcasting Partners

1. With a partner, brainstorm an idea for a podcast to use in your classroom.
2. Write a script of no more than five minutes.
3. Record the conversation and save it to your desktop.
4. Open Audacity and insert the track.
5. Wait for instructions.