Podcasting with Students of All Ages

Learn how Denyse Phelps is promoting student voice at her school with podcasting.

The art of podcasting can be complicated and yet, very simple.  It depends on how you want to produce your podcast. You can add sounds and music, edit, and have sponsors.  There are so many free tools available that really the only thing you need to purchase would be a microphone.  Podcasting is popular with all ages! Current statistics show that close to 75% of Americans have heard of or listened to a podcast that they enjoy. So, just how do you podcast with students?  Here are a few examples.

  • Pick a theme each month and discuss it with your students on a podcast.  Post this for staff, students, and parents to listen.
  • Podcast for a lesson. Put students in groups to discuss a topic for the lesson.  Then share all the podcasts on a platform with the students so they can listen to each podcast and learn more about each topic in the lesson. 
  • Encourage clubs and student groups to podcast.  This brings awareness to what they are doing and you can even share them with the community. 
  • Teen Advisory Groups can podcast together or interview others to highlight things going on in the community and school. 
  • Book Clubs can review books and add podcasts to a classroom platform or library resources to share with other students and staff. 
  • Podcasting in schools is also a great way to learn more about your staff. Share hobbies outside of school, fun facts, and so much more. 

All of these examples sound great, but now, are you wondering where to start?  The best thing to do when working with students and podcasting is to have a schedule and script if you must stay on track. The fun podcasts are ones recorded off the cuff, though. Having discussions with young students can really be lively and catch some great quotes. At the high school level, I like to prepare the person I am interviewing with the list of questions I will ask so I don’t leave anything out. You can always edit if you need to make changes. For my podcasting, I use a Toner Microphone I ordered from Amazon and WeVideo to record and edit my podcasts.  The microphone cost about $30. WeVideo has all the tools I need to produce a simple, quick podcast for my library. Think of a catchy name, schedule when to record, schedule when the podcast is released, create a script if needed and then line up your special guests. Once you record, you can add your podcast to the hosting platform of your choice. For school use, I post in Google Classroom. Simple and easy, but most of all–a great tool to work with all students and ages. 

Here are some resources in eMediaVA and beyond to help you get started on your podcasting journey: 

Podcasting and Audio Production for the Classroom

SoundCloud and Mobile Sound Recording

Netfiles, Season 8, Episode 3

Edutopia | How to Promote Student Voice–Literally

NPR’s Student Podcast Challenge

Denyse Phelps is a librarian in Frederick County Public Schools and an eMediaVA Ambassador.

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