I can see great potential for podcasts in education. At the education dept showcase I attended in May one of the speakers was Andrew Douch who has won awards for the innovative stuff he does, especially in creating podcasts for VCE biology. He has achieved great results and is really engaging his students. The podcasts allow him to cover the content of the course in a way that students can use over and over which then allows him more time in class to work on other important areas like exam preparation and SACs. His podcasts are available throught iTunes and he currently has over 2000 subscribers (and less than 50 actual students!!). At the showcase he talked about other uses: English teachers discussing a text; dance teachers giving the choreography over the music which students can use for rehearsing on their own; vodcasts where maths teachers can explain a method while showing it…the possibilities are enormous.
I had a look at podcastalley.com and I subscribed to a podcast of children’s book readings. My kids love listening to audio books on long car trips and we have been disappointed in the past when the 3rd disk of 5 of a story borrowed from the library has turned out to be so badly scratched that we can’t listen to it. Being able to download podcast stories will be great…when I figure out how to do it! I subscribed using my google reader account and I can open them and listen to them using the computer but I’ve got no idea how I would get them onto an mp3 player – any suggestions gratefully received!
I’ve now also downloaded the itunes software. I’ve only had a quick look but there seems to be plenty to choose from. I know from other people that downloading from there and putting onto an mp3 player or burning to cd is easy so I’m not expecting any dramas there.