Friday, November 30, 2007

New Semester, New Media Reviews

We are starting a new semester with Podcasting and Creative Audio 1 and the new Podcasting and Creative Audio 2. We have some new projects as well as some new approaches in teaching and with the technology.

One thing that we will be doing is collaborating more on the audio projects--more student and student and more student and teacher collaborations. I'll also be using the audio editing software to give students feedback in their projects.

The students' will have rss feeds for their original podcasts, but I'll also be remixing their audio files with my feedback.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Turning your mp3 into a bona fide podcast

A few people have asked how I use blogger for podcasting. Here's a video that goes over the basics.

This is a good video to use if you have already created an mp3 file and want to make a podcast. If you're not sure how to make an mp3 file, use my Audacity Tutorial.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Maps for Audio Tours

For our next project we will be creating audio tours of public places. We will be working with Google Maps to complement our podcasts. To begin, the students need to share the links to their places on our discussion board. Here are directions to do that.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Memoir Project, Part 1

This is the first batch of the students' memoirs. Very impressive.

When I started this class I emphasized to myself and the other people involved that the student podcasts weren’t supposed to be polished, professional-sounding work. In fact, when I had seen student plays and student newspapers that looked professional, there was often an overzealous teacher doing a lot of the work. I always felt that a focus on the professionalism of the final product took away from the students’ learning because it usually meant that the teacher was hijacking the work.

Then, as irony would have it, these audio memoirs come to my drop box. They are extremely polished, creative, and professional sounding—much better than I’m capable of. Listen to the first two memoirs that were submitted, “I’m a Good Boy, I Tell Ya’” and “The Day I Met Codie”

related link: More on Memoirs

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Audio Theater 1

Here are some of the students' audio plays from the Audio Theater 1 project. They each had to create an original story using the SAME dialogue. You can have students act as gangsters, robots, cop/criminal, spies, teacher/student, etc.

Person 1: I’ve been waiting for you.

Person 2: I’m sorry I’m late.

Person 1: That’s OK.

Person 2: Thank you.

Person 1: I have something for you.

Person 2: What is it?

Peron 1: This.

They had to write some brief narration and then add music and sound effects. The music and sound effects were from Creative Commons licensed material from CCMixter and the Free Sounds Project. The students created a range of characters--from gangsters to a married couple; from cops and robbers to a student and a principal.

Besides a focus on creative writing and audio editing, this project also introduced students to copyright, fair use, and the ethics of citing sources.

Enjoy the following five very different, short audio plays--all with the same dialogue

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Media Reviews

This episode shares some of the first drafts of the students' media review projects. For this project each student chose and reviewed a piece of media. It could have been a TV show, video game, book, CD, song.
The students did prewriting activities to get them to consider their audience's prior knowledge and interests and what to include in their reviews; the ultimate goal was to inform and engage their audience as they shared their tastes and interests.

I was very impressed with the quality of the students' work, and I was also surprised by the variety of their topics.
The four segments in this podcast are:
A review of Hana Kimi, a Taiwanese Drama available on YouTube
Two book reviews--one review of a contemporary novel, Walter Dean Myers' Somewhere in the Darkness and a review of a modern classic, John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men.
Finally, a review of a video game, NBA 2K7.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Audacity Tutorial

Audacity Tutorial

The Audacity tutorial was a hands-on way to teach the students the basic features of the Audacity software. The rest of the projects incorporate student choice and interest, but this one was strictly designed to focus on a variety of features and procedures of the software, so they can get started doing other projects with it. As I described it in the online course, we will use multitrack audio editing software in this course as a word processing program would be used in a writing course. All of the student projects were excellent. I used the first version that was submitted as the sample.

Here is the tutorial with a rubric and here are student samples of the finished product.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Course Rules

Below are the course rules for the podcasting course. They are in addition to your school rules and policies.

1) Appropriate Language—no profanity or obscenities in the most general sense of the terms will be allowed in any format in this course—in projects or in communication with other students or the instructor.

2) Safety for Self and Others—you are not to mention personally identifying information about yourself on any audio broadcast or accompanying document that is intended for use outside of the Blackboard course—this includes last names, screen names, school name, home address, or any other unique information about yourself or others.

3) Respect for Others—you should communicate with other students in the course with courtesy and respect. Disagreements are allowed, but must be communicated in respectful language.

4) Respect for Intellectual Property—you may not use the intellectual property (audio, text, video, images, etc.) of another person without permission.

5) Consent—You need to get the permission of any person you intend to record and put on a podcast. This person should be informed that the recording is for the public and for your podcast. You cannot use deception or record a person before you get his or her permission.

6) Reciprocity--You should also expect others—inside and outside of this course—to treat you according to these rules. It’s not just about being nice—most of these rules correlated with state, federal, and international laws. For example, no one should record you secretly or take your original material without your permission.

For more information see the Podcasting Legal Guide at Creative Commons.