One of the things that I enjoy most about my technology planning class is the opportunity to learn more about what’s happening in the world of K-12 teachers. Those of us in higher education read papers about the shaping of the Net Generation while our colleagues in the schools are living it every day. Every week I learn more about the kinds of pressures that teachers are under–particularly in this world of SOL’s and other high stakes testing. Every once in a while, though, I get a sense of the energy and creativity that teachers are able to unleash. Barbara Ganley blogged about a weekly podcast by members of a third grade class that certainly got my attention. These third graders won’t be entering college for a nearly a decade, and it’s hard to imagine the expectations they’ll bring with them when they hit the campuses if they keep using tools like these to enhance their learning.
Since last April, Bob’s third graders have been making weekly podcasts–third graders. (In third grade I was copying letters, practicing times tables and trying to avoid getting into trouble with my oh-so-scary teacher. ) I love the way he has kids summarizing highlights from the week (Word-of-the-week ‘s use of interviews was terrific, for instance). Bob talked a bit about how devoting time to the weekly shows has helped his students develop their speaking and writing voices, understand the flow of sentences, and consolidate the learning for the week. It’s such a great and easy idea–what a natural in the elementary school environment! Imagine what students reaching my doors are going to be able to do and want to do if they are podcasting and making on-line newsletters in third grade. College teachers had better wake up!
Here’s the link to the
show that ran just before Thanksgiving the current show, in which the student reporters provide information about their classroom to a new student: Podcast