What I’ve learned from four months of podcasting
At the start of the school year, I decided I’d start podcasting. It was mostly borne out of the desire to try something new and maybe have the slightest hint of competence when, inevitably my students (as two have) approached me about starting a podcast. When we started video five years or so ago, I had no experience, so this was my attempt to be ahead of my students and their desires.
Keep it simple. Especially at the start. My setup for this is remarkably easy. I use the Opinion app. All I have to do is push the record button, talk, then name the podcast. Before I record it, I scribble out what I want to mention each week and then I talk. Some days I tape it on my computer monitor so I don’t even have to look down when I’m talking. At first, I was pretty stilted (and probably still pretty stilted), but I feel myself getting better at it. My teaching style is pretty laid back. I don’t like to lecture much and I want the podcast to sound that way as well.
Plan it out. As I said, the couple times I’ve tried to wing it, I wind up sounding like I’m winging it. I find I just start talking in circles and get lost easily. I’m sure my colleagues with broadcast experience are screaming “Duh” at their screen as they read this, but it took me a couple times really stuttering my way through a broadcast to have my “A-ha” moment on this.
Have a reason for doing it. I just wanted to do something new for myself and maybe, just maybe, show my students that it is okay to do new and different things in the classroom. I never want to do things to simply do them. For me, yes, I wanted to try something new, but I also wanted to have something that could provide my students some information about what would be happening in Room 139 during the week. My podcast simply lays out the week in front of my students and lets those who are listening know what they can expect when they walk through my classroom doors. This also has the added benefit of making me be organized at least the week before I am set to do the podcast.