Thursday, February 16, 2012

Is Podcasting Passe?

I began podcasting with elementary school students in 2009 (  The media coordinator and I challenged fourth and fifth grade students to write reviews for library books they read.  If they turned in their review, we might select them to record their review.  The media coordinator trained the students how to write book reviews.  I trained the students how to use Audacity.  As mentioned in "Podcasting & Vodcasting" (Meng, 2005) there is a significant amount of technical knowledge required to create podcasts. 

Initial enthusiasm was great!  Students were writing more book reviews than every before!  We successfully created ten podcasts and got iPod Shuffles in the library so students could listen to the reviews without a computer.

I hoped that the process of recording and publishing the reviews would be something that the students could manage with minimal help from the media coordinator.  Unfortunately, the podcasting learning curve proved too steep for elementary students and too time consuming for the media coordinator.  Borja mentions this potential downfall of podcasting in "Podcasting Craze Comes to K-12 Schools".  We haven't created a book review podcast since 2010.

As I created a podcast about Twitter and Online Safety this month I rediscovered the thrill of working with audio and the tedious process of posting as a podcast.  I had to email the file to myself, convert it to a different format and then upload it Podomatic.  As Robert Craven was quoted in "Podcasting Craze Comes to K-12 Schools", there's no "one-click solution".  Meng hits on another key factor in "Podcasting and Vodcasting".  People want to repurpose content and make it available with existing and upcoming mediums. 

I can record a video on my iPod Touch and post it to YouTube in two clicks.  I can take a picture with my cell phone and post it to FaceBook with one text message.  For podcasting to make a resurgence we need a one-click solution that makes it accessible via a social networking resources like YouTube or FaceBook.

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