By Shawn Wheeler
The most enchanting facet of technology is the fact it is constantly changing. In October 2005, I realized the term “podcasting” was entering my brain with increasing frequency. Considering a primary function of my job is to evaluate new technology and its ramifications in education, I felt compelled to look into this term. Sitting at my computer, I “Googled” the term; within minutes I had entered a new world. An entire subculture had been born and I found myself an outsider looking inside.
One of the first sites I encountered was http://www.podcast.net. I picked a Genre, (Learning & Instruction – what else?), and began listening to a few shows. To be honest, I was not impressed with what I heard. However, the concept intrigued me. Could this work in our classrooms?
I began to remember the times I read through my notes as I studied for a test thinking, “I know the teacher had more to say about photosynthesis besides “Makes plants grow,” I sure wish I could have recorded the lecture”. It was at that moment the light bulb appeared above my head. Podcasting has value in education. This technology isn’t just for techno geeks with a love of their own voice. This technology would extend the learning day, change the way students review for tests and allow those students who were absent to hear the lesson. Podcasting was going to change education.
With this revelation, I found myself quickly immersed in the Adventure in Podcasting. Reading everything I could find on the web about podcasting and related tools, my excitement grew and I wanted to share this with the world. Okay, that is a bit much, but I certainly wanted to share this with the teachers in my school district.
On November 25th, I published my first podcast and its corresponding web page titled Adventures in Podcasting15. The focus of the show is an audio archive of the process involved in bringing Podcasting to my school district. I share with the listeners the triumphs, challenges and disappointments I