Saturday, May 23, 2009

Might As Well Face It: I'm Addicted to Podcasting

I was supposed to launch my first online class at College 2 on the Tuesday after Memorial Day, but it was cancelled because no students registered. Every other online section filled, so I was incredibly disappointed. Even the day, I waited anxiously for the registration love all the while wondering if any of the following reasons kept me from filling up:

  1. The college changed my 8-week, June 8 start to a 5-week start with six days notice, so not only is my class not published in the catalog, it wasn't available for all that long.

  2. Students had to pay for the class as soon as they register, so I was left wondering if some would register at the last minute for financial reasons.

  3. The link in the School Online section for my class was developed by another instructor, so my teaching-style was not reflected in a place where students go to make decisions.

Nonetheless, I worked like a crazy woman to get the class ready on the off chance that it would be a go. I only needed five students, but it wasn't meant to be.

I'm pretty proud of the class. It's organized, intuitive, and since I had to re-create an 8-week curriculum into 5-weeks, I decided to use my own assignments rather than the ready-made course I was given.

During all the training I've received to get started at this college (College 1 isn't as advanced in it's Blackboard capabilities, so I'm learning a lot), I discovered Podcasting.

The first thing I did was download free software for recording and sound edting at Audacity. It was a quick and easy process.

Then I just hit record and started talking. For some of my podcasts (I recorded five) I wrote scripts so there wouldn't be long pauses as I reviewed my lessons. For others, like the ones where I simply tell the students what they're going to be working on in the current unit, I just talked.

They take an eternity to upload onto Blackboard, but since I record and upload on my laptop, I can move over to my desktop to continue to work.

Now I also blog at The Adventures of Mr. Busypants, and with all these newly acquired podcasting capabilities, I decided to have a little fun. When Mr. Busypants came home from school, I pulled up all my blogposts that had his artwork and interviewed him about it. Some of his artwork included books he wrote that I scanned in, so I had him narrate.

He totally got into it, and like his mother, he couldn't stop podcasting.

Now we both have our mark on the world of podcasting. Every time I play one of his, he grins from ear to ear and listens to himself intently.

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