"One Minute How To" Podcasting

I did a search on Podcast Pickle for various podcasts that I thought could be helpful to me as an educator. I was surprised how interested I became in the "one minute how to" section for educators. I felt that many of the podcasts listed here, such as: "how to write a haiku", "how to write a 100 word story", "how to write a poem", and "how to write a funny song" were wonderful tutorials that could easily be used in a classroom. Although I never thought of using podcasts in my own classroom I feel these "one minute how to's" would be a fantastic way to mix things up in an English or writing class. Students could listen to the speaker's suggestions then give the task a try themselves.

The "how to" podcasts cover such a variety of topics I could never listen to them all. However I did feel that students could be assigned to create a "one minute how to" podcast of their own to post on this website. Every student is good as something and this could be a great motivator to show student how to do a self-examination to decide what their good at, use their words to explain in succinctly, and record it in a good oral speaking voice. This assignment could be used across the curriculum and even across grade levels.

Using Skype for Global Communication

Skype is a virtual communication application that allows users to exchange communication instantly through text of video. It allows users to use instant messaging, video conferencing, file transferring for free. It is possible to also make telephone calls through your computer to a land line phone using Skype for a fee.

Since video conferencing and messages consisting of text are free this is an amazing opportunity for teachers and students to connect with other students and classrooms around the world. This could lead to opportunities for having penpals online or through mail along with individual or whole class video conferences. Students from other schools can have a lot to offer and share with other students whether they're from the same country or other countries.

Since I am hoping to one day have a bilingual classroom of my own I would love to use Skype to connect with students and teachers from various Hispanic countries. My goal with this would be to further my students' biculturism and bilingualism while also learning more about their and their classmate's native cultures from first hand sources.

Global Cooperation

I researched both Epals and the Center for Interactive Learning and Cooperation (CILC). I felt that both of these websites were good tools to use in a classroom

I feel that penpals have made their ways out of the typical classroom now-a-days and epals is an easy and quick way to bring that back. With epals the message is sent and received instantly within the same state, another state, or another country. There is no worry of lost mail and responses not being received for weeks. I love that having epals gives students a purpose for writing and encourages them to learn more about what other students are like their same age, living in a different place at the same time. Although it is difficult to facilitate, I wish there were some way a person could confirm they they actually were a teacher in order to make sure you really are connecting with another group of students. I think Epals could easily lend itself to video conferencing with other classrooms from around the world, perhaps even to practice a language students are learning.

On the other hand I wasn't as excited about CILC. Although I think it could be a fantastic place for educators to come together to work together on a professional level or to collaborate between their classes, I didn't feel as though this would be as useful for me personally. As usual I felt like the connection with other educators for ideas and tips is always beneficial, but I felt like it was more like "help wanted ads" on-line for specific forms and aspects of collaboration. If I had my own classroom I'm sure I would enjoy this website more because I might actually be able to participate in something like this with my class or use it as a form of extra credit during writing assignments. As a Science teacher I didn't feel like I would be able to currently use their services.