Podcast of the week: Classic Poetry Aloud

June 29, 2008

Two weeks ago I began a new series of weekly reviews of podcasts that can be used in education. While I did not do such a great job making the second posting, I am back on track. Last week was the final week of a graduate class, so I trust you will give me a little slack.

Classic Poetry Aloud

Classic Poetry Aloud is an excellent example of how audio can enhance what simply reading cannot. You can subscribe to the podcast by following linking to any of the subscribe buttons on the podcast page. Additionally you can view any podcast going back to May 2007 by following the link of the podcast page to the blog page.

The purpose of the Classic Poetry Aloud Podcast is “to add another dimension to the enjoyment of poetry: listening“. As a teacher that has previously taught English, students often lack the understanding that poets write poems to be read. I have compared it to reading music lyrics; without the inflection of voice it does not mean the same. While textbook publishers have previously released audio CDs of the poems within their texts, this limits the teacher to only those poems within the textbook. Classic Poetry Aloud makes use of any poem beyond the limits of copyright limitations. The poems range a large variety of authors ranging from William Blake to Thomas Wyatt with numerous in between. The poems are organized by themes including the Romantics, War Poems, Love Poems, and Season just to name a few.

The blog site also note a Top Ten list based on listener downloads. Many of these also make my top list.

“If” by Rudyard Kipling

“O Captain! My Captain!” by Walk Whitman

And a few of my personal favorite that did not make the Top Ten

“To a Poet a Thousand Years Hence” by Jame Elroy Flecker

“To the Virgins to make much of Time” by Robert Herrick

If you teach poetry, you should be able to find at least one poem you enjoy and would like to teach. If you enjoy poetry this podcast is in your corner. If you have never appreiciated poetry, give it a try for a week. You might find something new you like. Don’t worry, I won’t tell.

Enjoy your day,

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Podcast of the Week: SMARTBoard Lessons Podcast

June 14, 2008

As part of my still being formed routine to get back into the habit of blog writing, I am making it a point to publish a review of a podcast once a week. I do this for several reasons. Once of which is that i am addict of audio. I play jazz while I teach and I always have either iTunes or the TV playing. I cannot handle silence. Another reason is that two years ago my school began actively integrating iPod technology into our classrooms. By this I mean that we have issued iPods to our students and are actively working with our teachers to open to the all possibilities that this technology permits.

Another technology that my school actively promotes are Interactive White Boards, specifically SMART Boards. For this reason I cannot think of a better way to connect these two technologies than to make my first podcast review one that combines these technologies.

SMARTBoard Lessons Podcasts

The SMARTBoard Lessons Podcasts is engaging, entertaining, and educational. Podcast hosts Ben Hazzard and Joan Badger provide great lessons plans, links, and music. The lesson plans are often geared toward specific disciplines; however, they can often be adapted to various courses. At the least the lessons demonstrate tools and tricks that a teacher can use or have their students use to make the IWB more than just a projection screen. Joan must spend as much time on the the internet as I do, not necessarily a good or a bad thing, as she always has a couple useful link for teachers to check out. The links are always helpful and often are some type of Web 2.0 application that can be combined with the IWB. The two hosts work great together and provide an entertaining product. Regardless if you are a teacher looking to improve your SMARTBoarding skills or an educator considering the purchase of such a board, this podcast should be a regular part of your iTunes download.

Favorite espisodes include:

Episode 126 Cause and Effect Commercialism
Episode 121 Combining SMART Recorder and Voicethread
Episode 99 Which gave me a Jeopardy Templete

I realize that these are all recent episodes, but i promise I have been listening to this podcasts since the first ten episodes. I’ll blame it on short term memory.

Keep up the good work Ben and Joan.

Enjoy your day,