UTB Show: Podcasting and using Technology to transform your classroom

UTB Show: Podcasting and using Technology to transform your classroom


Mike: Yes. Hi everyone it’s Mike Reading
here from Teachers Training and soon to be www.usingtechnologybetter.com, I’ll explain
that a little bit later too. It’s great to have you as part of the conversation today. And our conversations are always around this
thought that we want technology and pedagogy to collide. And so this is not just about
tools and technology. It’s really about how do we teach better and so we’re really
excited that you’re a part of today. You might have noticed that there is a Doc
that we have created for you that you can write your ideas, your questions, your thoughts
into and so to get that Doc you just need to go to www.bit.ly/utbs01, so u-t-b-s all
lower case and then 01 and you’ll find that document. So today with me is my co-host as
always. Blake. How are you mate? Blake: Yes, good. Thanks Mike. Good lovely
intro there. So we are sort of rebranding this to Using Technology Better which is really
what we’re all about. We want to get the best out of technology and that’s what this
podcast is for. And yes, today I think we’ve got this Doc going, it would be good to get
some sharing ideas in there. As we’re talking any questions, put in any comments, we can
also have a discussion in there and it gives everyone a bit of a resource so let’s focus
on that, but yes this is the podcast of technology and pedagogy collides. So with us today is Andrew Douch who’s sort
of really the master of podcast I guess and all things technology. He’s been using it
for many years before the term Flipped Learning was even coined. He was flipping his classroom
so he’s going to talk to us a little bit about that. Is there anything else you wanted
to add, Mike or are we are off to go? Mike: No, just that there’s a hashtag “Using
Tech Better.” So if you want to communicate with us via social media, we’ll keep our
eye out on that as well. So we have to split our personality across multiple places so
it should be good, so Using Tech Better is a hashtag and that Doc one more time, it’s
just bit.ly and then it’s utbs01. So let’s go ahead I’m really excited to have a chat
with Andrew and someone else certainly could be watching for a while. I can remember when
I was teaching science probably, gosh, maybe ten years ago stumbling across your information
in iTunes and so listening to a couple of your podcasts and sharing them with my students
back then. So it’d be great to catch up. We’re almost running a bit late today because
we’re just having such a great chat behind the scenes about all things to technology.
So Andrew, welcome. It’s great to have you. Andrew: Yes. Thanks Mike and it is good to
be here. Yes it’s good. It was about ten years ago. Not quite nine, I think it was
2005 that I first started podcasting. So it’s inclined to ten years ago. It makes you feel
old isn’t it? Mike: Just a little bit – What keeps you
off in a podcast? I mean of all the things you could have chosen, why did you choose
that? Andrew: It wasn’t really by design. It was
just plan. I mean I’ve been teaching biology for 15 years or so at that time and I can
tell I was just always looking for ways of helping my students to be more effective to
study and I guess at that point I was still really thinking about in terms of their grades.
I guess it was 2005 so I still had that real, as Ken Robinson would say, that real sort
of industrial sort of model mentality about education. It was all about getting them through
VCE and getting the best results possible. And either ways, I’ve done things like you
I know, I used to make little flip cards for them with a question on one side and then
an answer on the other side so that they could – when I was sitting at the bus stop or
in the car on the way home or something and I had a few moments, they could just you know,
they’re not going to get a textbook out of their bag to study, but then pull out a
little deck of cards out of their pocket and just go through a few. And so then I’d experiment with a whole
lot of things like that. When I was driving to school, I’d just heard of podcasting.
I downloaded this week in Tech which is a podcast that’s still running now and with
(Leo Laporte) and I’ve been listening to that driving to school and back. I’ve got
like a 20 minute drive to school. So 40 minutes a day, I’m sitting in my car just commuting
and I was listening to this podcast and I was thinking this is fantastic. I’m learning
so much about things I don’t know about and it’s enjoyable, and it’s not taking
up any of my personal time, and it’s not taking up any of my school time. All I’m
sacrificing is my drive time which doesn’t really – it’s not – I don’t consider
that really precious time. And so I was learning in time that didn’t
really matter to me. And the thought just crossed my mind one day one of the awesome
things – It would be awesome if my biology students could learn from a biology podcast.
So really that’s where it started. I went online and started looking for a biology podcast
and there wasn’t really one that I could recommend to them so I thought I’ll see
if I can figure out how to make one. So that’s really where it began and then the kids took
it from there really. It was you know I get them to a sample podcast
and said what would you recommend, do you recommend that this would – this would be
a good way to study when you’re on the bus instead of using the little flip cards or
the textbook or whatever and they came back really excited saying that this is fantastic
because you can – this one kid said that you – he said, you can’t study on the
bus because you look like a real nerd. And yes, but you can listen to a podcast and everyone
just thinks you’re listening to a music and so they’ll leave you alone. So he said
this is fantastic. I’m able to study. He had a one hour bus ride, but he said I can
listen for an hour to a podcast and it’s a good quality hour of study. It’s not really
costing me anything and I can do it far more effectively than if I tried to read a book
or something like that. So that’s really where it started. Blake: It’s really opt in as well. You can
sit and do it when and however and I know all of us here will all listen to podcast
and probably – watching a show, listening to a podcast. We all love that medium. But
it’s interesting. Andrew: And that’s the thing. As you said
with that opt in thing sometimes you don’t feel like listening to a particular podcast,
do you? Like sometimes you’re in the mood for listening to something light and funny.
And other times you feel like really learning something new and so even as adults, we – it’s
the same with TV. Sometimes you’re in the mood for science
field and sometimes you’re in the mood for something much more serious and heavy. But
it’s cool. We make kids – we just say, well it is period five now so you’re doing
biology. It’s serious and heavy time. And we assume that the kids are all in the mood
for that. With the podcast, they can choose a time that
suits them when they feel responsive to it and then I think that’s a big deal. Blake: Yeah I think it is. It’s interesting
you’re talking about flip charts. I mean now we’re probably modern technology for
2005. But we – the ipod, I’m interested to know what the technology was now. I mean
obviously we have all these other technology now with Hangouts and Screencasting and all
these other stuff. But the iPod, I mean that was the technology in the day, how has that
changed now? I’m interested to know what you were doing
then in your journey to sort of where you are now and what you found works and what
principles have changed and what has been really successful? That’s sort of what I’m
interested to know. Andrew: I mean we can do a lot more cool stuff
now obviously and things are easier. I mean in 2005, a lot of kids didn’t even have
the internet at home and a lot of kids didn’t have iPods so I had to tell them to buy one.
I send a letter home to their parents actually and told them that I wanted their kid to have
an iPod. Blake: How had that been – Andrew: It worked out pretty well actually.
I sent the letter and then I went and told my principal that I have done it. So better
to act and ask for forgiveness – and it was fantastic and he could tell it was something
that I really thought was something and so he backed me up a hundred percent. But really, parents accepted it surprisingly
well. There was only one parent who thought that was a bit much and complained and that
was a parent who was also a teacher at the school. And six months later, he was sitting
beside me and I was showing him how to make podcasts because he was saying how much his
kid loved it and so yes, he started doing it himself for his own classes. So I think it’s – parents really responded
to that pretty well and in those days, an iPod was a pretty – I mean nobody else had
iPods except for entertainment so it was – these days obviously it’s a lot easier because
I go to schools now where most of the kids have a smartphone or an iPad or something
like that, and those devices have all got Pod catching apps on them so you don’t even
have to – with an iPod, you couldn’t even stream a podcast directly to the device. You
had to download it first on a computer and then plug your iPod dock port in and sink
it all across. And so it was a lot more cumbersome. It’s so simple now. And once you’ve set it up and you’ve got
your podcast happening, and the kids all subscribe to it in something like Downcast or Instacast
or even the podcast app that’s on – it comes one an iPad or an iPhone. Once they’re
all subscribed to it, it’s seamless then because you create your podcast. You upload
it to wherever you host it and the devices all just download it in the background. So
in that respect, things have got much easier. Blake: Yes and what’s the format of that?
Has that sort of changed over the years or is still the content the same? Like if you
changed the way you’re delivering your content because of this? Or is really the content
the same, it’s just the means in which people are getting it has changed? Andrew: Well yeah, I mean I guess they diversified
over time. So we all started off with just a straight audio podcast then we got the ability
to make enhanced podcasts where you can put pictures and slides and things that will show
on the screen as the podcast continues. And then I started playing with screen casting
of course and vodcasting and various other things like that. So I guess I diversified in a way because
I mean if I’m going to talk about something that’s fairly – you can discuss it and
you can describe something in words, then an audio podcast is fantastic for that. But
there are some topics that really don’t lend themselves to an audio format. I mean try explaining – I’m a biology
teacher, but imagine trying to explain how to solve a genetic pedigree without actually
showing a diagram, it’s almost impossible to do. So some topics just lend themselves
to one format or another. Blake: Absolutely. Mike: I’m interested in terms of what kept
you going, did you see a great difference in results with the students or I don’t
know if you’re maybe like me, I get bored a little bit and then move on to the next
thing. What’s kept you on the long haul? Andrew: I mean it was two things. Initially,
it was result that was what I – that’s what – I mean I’m a science teacher. So
in my hierarchy of loves, at the very top is my wife and kids and just a little bit
lower is graph. I’m always working for graphs and trying to get the best results possible.
And so I initially saw that and just watching the kids anecdotally, the kids I’ve known
since they were in year seven I was looking at them and thinking, for this kid, I think
this kid’s learning better than I would have expected or I just had this really good
feeling that my graphs would be great that really but it was – what happened over time
though was I started to notice that the engagement of the kids was just something I’ve never
seen before and so I think that’s what really kept me going to answer your question, is
ultimately it was just that I had this community of kids that were going home from school and
they were listening to the podcast in those days – that we’re using MSN, if you remember
that. But kids were getting online at 9:00 to 10:00
at night forming these little study groups on MSN and they’d be talking about stuff
and I’d get a message to say, can you come and do our MSN conversation and answer these
questions for us? And I mean it was just – I’d never seen kids so engaged in learning as
happened that year and so I’d love to be able to say that it was all by design that
I’d sat down and thought hey, we could flip the classroom. But in reality, it started really just as
a way of me thinking how can I get my kids studying more and all the community interaction
and once that started happening, we started saying well wouldn’t it be great if we had
some place online where instead of using MSN that’s kind of – it was like the 2005
equivalent of a Google Hangout really. But let’s have some sort of a way that – the
discussion boards. So we had a very – back in those days, I kind of remember the name
of the service that we used. But it was just a very basic discussion board. But the kids
just loved it and they were on there and they were just all around the clock, asking and
answering each other’s questions. I’ve never seen anything like it before
and that I think was what kept me doing it was I got to a point after a couple of years
where I thought I couldn’t go back to teaching the way I did before. It was a whole different
thing. Mike: Yes. So in the last fortnight we had,
one of the teachers actually at Blake’s school who’s been playing around with the
Khan Academy a little bit and flipping his classroom. How do you see what you’re doing
is different to maybe what Khan Academy is providing? Do you see just how teachers understand
the differences between the two, maybe some of the reasoning behind it? Andrew: Yes. Well you know, I mean – so
Khan is a great advocate of the Flipped Classroom Model and I think that if he had his way,
there would be no teachers and everybody would just be online watching Khan Academy videos
and working their way through the associated materials. I mean all that stuff is great.
I mean he’s a brilliant guy and some of the explanations I think are fantastic and
certainly the structure of the courses, that’s very clever stuff. But it’s kind of different because to me
in the way I do things, the teacher is still very much integrated in the whole process
in a much more organic kind of way and so to me the podcast is sort of an extension
of the classroom as opposed to a replacement for the classroom. So my sort of thinking is that the Flipped
Classroom is great in the challenges they have – our old way of thinking that what
we do is limited by where we are and what time it is and all that sort of thing. And
if nothing else, it says well you don’t have to be in a classroom now to learn math
or biology or history. There are other options which they went there
generation ago so we have those options and instead of doing homework at home, now you
could be doing that in the classroom instead of listening to a teacher talking which you
can do on your computer. And so I like the fact that it challenges that. But for me the question is the whole – what’s
exciting about all of these stuff really, whether you call it the Flipped Classroom
or whatever you call it, is that teachers now have choices about things that our teachers
didn’t have choices about. We can choose when we teach, we can choose where we teach,
where students learn. We can choose different mediums of communications. We can choose whether
our students publish their work or whether they don’t and how they publish it. I mean
none of those choices were available to our teachers. They had to teach in a classroom in five or
50 minute periods that’s the only access they had to students. So they had to use that
time because students didn’t have access to the other things. Students didn’t have
access to information than either other than through a teacher whereas now half the stuff
that we used to teach kids can Google for themselves. So now we just got a whole lot of choices
available to us and that’s what’s really exciting to me is that and really at the moment,
I mean I still go to a lot of schools and in a lot of schools, teachers are still teaching
the way their teachers taught them and their teachers were teaching the way their teachers
taught them. And of course, that style of teaching was
designed by teachers who were living under technological constraints that are gone now
and we don’t have to do things that way but we still just tend to do it because that’s
what our teachers did and I think it’s just exciting to explore possibilities for teaching
in different ways in different places in a different time. Blake: That’s the fun with it and I think
that’s why this generation of students are really – It’s an education is different
now and it’s this exciting time to be in education, to be around it and to – we’re
looking at these tools and technologies and how we could use them because if people are
going to – people like yourself are pioneering the way of how the classroom’s are going
to look in the next five years because I don’t think it’s going to be the same as what
it is now especially given all this technology. I’m interested – Andrew: I think we’ve probably seen more
change in education in the past 12 months than we probably saw in the decade before
that. And teachers are starting to get it. I mean back in 2006, 2007, I was speaking
at conferences and at schools and I was telling the stories of what was happening in my classroom
and explaining why we need to question how 20th century sort of paradigms about pedagogy
and teachers just – they weren’t getting it. Sometimes I always met with hostility but
often just blank walls. But now, honestly teachers are getting it and I think it’s
– that’s really exciting. All of a sudden it’s like we’re starting to see the change
happening in education that we’ve seen in other industries. I mean other industries
have already embraced technology and allowed that evolve and for example medicine or – but
education, we’ve been a little bit slow off the mark. But I think it is happening.
So you’re right. It’s an exciting time to be part of it. Blake: It is. And part of that I think is
also the ease of use, the access anywhere and it’s all very easy to access. And one
of the things that I like especially about Khan Academy, we were looking at it last week,
it’s just how easy it is for teachers to have all these tools and these data at their
fingertips of what their students are doing and I just sort of wanted to sort of parallel
that with doing podcasting and trying to do screencasting and all that stuff. If you’re
a new teacher to this and this your first go at it, what do you suggest then? What’s
an easy way to get on board, something that anyone can sort of jump into? Andrew: Yes. Sure. I mean I think screencasting
is a great place to start because you can use that for just about – you know, to teach
just about anything and the tool that I’m recommending at the moment to everybody pretty
much is Screencast-O-Matic which you can download for free fromwww.screencast-o-matic.com and
it’s certainly not the best screencasting tool and it’s not the tool even that I use
myself. But I think that if you’re just beginning,
it’s dead set easy to use. You basically just say I want to record this part of my
screen. You click Record and then you click stop when you finish and it’s all wrapped
up for you, they have their own hosting site so you can just – you click Publish It and
it gives you a link that you can give to your students. So I mean it couldn’t be easier. But it’s also fairly powerful that it will
record your webcam so students can see your face as well as the screen which I think is
– that just helps to make it a little bit more personal. I always think that students,
they respond better to a video if they can see the person that’s speaking to them especially
if it’s a person they know from the classroom. So I think that’s, for screencasting, that’s
fantastic. I still think there’s a place for audio
podcasting and often audio podcasting is – people see it as – why would you make an audio
podcast if you can make a screencast or a video and put that on YouTube? Surely, that
will be better and I thought – I started thinking that too some years ago and I started
– I stopped making podcasts. I started making screencasts and thinking more is better. They
can hear me and they can see the screen and they – but some of my students met me in
the school yard one day when I was on yard duty and they said, actually, we like your
screencast and everything but really the podcasts were better which is interesting. But when you look at it from their perspective,
it sort of makes sense because a screencast, you’ve got to be looking at the screen.
So now, it’s competing with Angry Birds, and it’s competing with Facebook, and it’s
competing with other YouTube videos and everything else that kids do when they’re looking at
the screen. You can’t be looking at a screencast while you’re riding your bike for example
or while you’re washing the dishes or mowing the lawn. But an audio podcast, you can listen to at
any of those times. When you’re on the bus on the way home or walking or – so in a
lot of ways I think there’s still really a place for an audio podcast particularly
for longer form explanations. You know my audio podcast would go for an hour, sometimes
an hour and a half. You never make a video that went that long because kids wouldn’t
watch it if it goes for more than five or six minutes whereas an audio podcast, you
can make it an hour long and it doesn’t really matter because they can listen for
ten minutes and come back the next day, press Play and it’ll pick up right where they
left off. So they have a choice of how long they listen
for. So for an audio podcast, and again because lots of really great choices – have you
seen those things? So, I’m quite a fan of these, it’s called easy-Speak and basically
– have you seen this? Mike: No, I haven’t. Blake: I’ve seen them recently at a conference
actually. Andrew: Yes. It’s pretty cool. So what I
love about it, because it all starts exactly what you’re talking about that it’s become
incredibly easy. So basically you turn the microphone on and you record. And it’s a
nice low gain microphone so your voice sounds really nice and rich and resonant where if
you record or say unto a computer, you sound kind of tinny, that’s not so great. But once you’ve finished recording, you
pull the back of this thing and it’s going to be like a USB plug on the back of it. So
you just stick it into the USB port on your computer. The file is already an MP3 so you
just drag it straight off the microphone and upload it somewhere. So you don’t even need
a computer now to make a podcast. I think that’s pretty exciting. Blake: Yes. And really you can put this on
anything. You can put this straight onto a Google site. You can put this onto – upload
this on iTunes or you could just email it out to your kids. It’s that easy, isn’t
it? Andrew: Exactly, yes. And if you want to put
it on to iTunes, the service I use is PodOmatic. I’ve been using PodOmatic now for a number
of years and I look at other services but I just keep coming back to PodOmatic because
it’s free for you know, at least when you’re starting, it’s free and then assuming the
people start downloading your podcast, you have to start paying money for the bandwidth. But really I think for most teachers it’s
going to be free and they do all the RSS and all that geeky stuff so that you can get your
podcast into the iTunes store without really – you don’t have to know anything anymore. Whereas back in 2005, it took me a whole Saturday
just to figure out how to create an RSS feed for my podcast so that I could get it in the
iTunes Store. And now, you basically just click a few buttons and it’s there. It’s
simple now. When I make my podcasts, I use a desktop microphone
and the one I use – and I see you got a pretty fancy one there, MIke, but I’m using
this. It’s the Blue Yetti which is about 170 bucks or something. It’s not outrageously
expensive but I like that because it’s got built-in gain control and it’s a decent
microphone, it’s just a USB interface so you don’t need a separating mixing desk
or anything like that. You just plug it straight into the USB port. But I think the sound quality
for the price is quite good. Blake: Yes. Well that sounds great. Well,
I’ll put up a couple of those – sorry Mike. I’ll put up a couple of apps into
the document and I know a lot of the viewers are really keen to ask some questions and
they’ve got plenty of thoughts going in the documents so maybe Mike, if you want to
start running through those. Mike: Yes. We’ll put all our recommendations
for the microphones and what we use and stuff. We’ll just chuck that into the show notes
and email. So if you haven’t registered, just go back to where this is playing in the
description. You’ll see that there’s a registration link and if you put it in there,
that’ll be great and then we will get an email. And we do – like what Andrew says, obviously
this is on video but we strip the audio out and make it an audio version in iTunes available
too, and we give you a transcription. So we’re trying to cover all bases in terms of some
people like to read, some like to listen and some like to watch. So here’s an interesting question. Someone
says in this Google Doc we’ve got going, I have colleagues who love using Pages. What
kind of Google apps might be useful as Pages has been for them? Blake, do you want to answer
that or Andrew is that something that you want to add around that? Blake: Yes. I can definitely speak to that.
So just speaking about Pages, I mean obviously Google Docs does a lot of Pages. It’s probably
isn’t as interactive and as – originally formatted these pages but obviously the benefits
you’re getting with a live collaboration and what we’re doing in this document right
now we’re Google Apps really shines. I think that’s really the power of Google Apps,
is the collaboration. I mean the formatting is nice but really it’s all about the content
and delivering that content and creating that content in new and interesting ways. So I
don’t know if you have anything to add to that, Andrew? Andrew: No. I couldn’t agree more. I mean
Pages is kind of like a cross between WordPress or a page formatting thing and you can sort
of share, you can save anything to iCloud and open it on a different device and all
that sort of thing but a Google Doc is really a – I mean you wouldn’t use it. If I was
typing up a document for myself, for a meeting or something, I wouldn’t use Google Docs.
But for this it’s perfect where we can all be adding things to the same document in real
time. Blake: Absolutely. Mike: So ? here from Israel is just saying,
I teach history, we’ve flipped our classes – students love it, the parents love it
but the system doesn’t. Did you have the same problem? How did you deal with it? I think we’ve kind of talked a bit around
this that sometimes you kind of just got to make the changes and apologize later if you
need to but keep pushing that out. There are a few questions in there around Chromebooks
and they are rolling our Chromebooks around that whole BYOD, is that a solution? So there
are a few questions in there. Blake, I don’t know if you’ve read some of those. Blake: Yes, yes. [Crosstalk] – Mike: Okay perspectives and offline, especially
sheets and some that’s back on. Do you want to maybe just talk to that for a second? Blake: Yes, sure. So I mean there’s been
a few apps recently that have gone offline on Chromebooks and actually have a section
in the store if you go to the Chrome web store and click on the – down the left is an offline
tab and that will just list down any apps that work offline. So I think there are actually
even podcasting apps that will cache the podcast offline. So if you have kids around the train
that want to open their apps off and do some work, listen to the podcast, they can do that
as well. So I’d definitely check that out you just
search through the Chrome web store there’s new stuff in there every day. It just grows
every day. But I know this question is one around, sort
of flipped classroom here just talking about every single student does the home learning
part of the activity but it falls apart because I have to teach the content to the class anyway.
So I now get to be the tutor that I’d like to be. Plus, now my current school students
and myself have that connection at home so it’s very difficult. What do you say to
that, Andrew? Andrew: Yes. And that’s an issue that a
lot of people raise. And I think – I mean in a traditional flipped class, this is where
I think sometimes the issue comes in. In a traditional flipped classroom, you send the
kids home to watch video one. And the next day in class you do some sort of an activity,
have some little bit discussion, they’re doing homework that relates to video one and
then they go home and watch video two and then they come and do the activities that
relate to video two. That I think sometimes doesn’t – present
problems because you might – what if a kid doesn’t watch the video? What do they do in class and they can’t
participate in the activity? So then teachers sort of end up saying I can’t
– we better spend half the class going through the main points that were in the video for
the benefit of the ones who didn’t listen and then it ends up – then I imagine kids
just think well what’s the point watching the videos because I’m going to come to
class the next day and the teacher is going to explain it all again anyway. So I think
that’s a self-defeating way of working and to me what works much better is to just – to
say – to make – I’m saying while I’m teaching new genetics, pedigrees or something.
I’m going to make all the videos that I think explain that topic, the things that
– I mean a lot of the stuff they can Google for themselves they don’t need me to explain
it at all. But there are some things that I think I explain
really well that kids at that age will not – they’ll understand, relate to the examples
that I use and the language I use and so on. So things that I feel I need to explain if
I make those things into a video or a podcast or a screencast or something like that and
then all the learning activities are there as well. So then in – I can just say to my kids then
these are the videos you need to watch. These are the activities you need to do. We need
to have a discussion about this. We’ll be doing that on Thursday. So by then, you need
to have done this and this. But it doesn’t matter whether you watch video one at home.
Some kids might prefer to do the book work at home and watch the videos in class. And to me, a traditional flipped classroom
advocate would say that’s not okay. But to me I think it just makes sense. Instead
of saying what we have to do at home and what we have to do in the classroom, we can now
do pretty much anything anywhere as it suits us. So I think with kids that sort of flexibility
is not necessarily bad thing and then of course you get over the problem of turning up on
Tuesday and finding that half the kids didn’t watch the video that you set for them for
Monday night. It doesn’t matter, they can watch that on Tuesday but they’ll have to
do some other work at home instead and different kids will operate differently that way and
also in case for the kids who don’t have internet at home for example too because they
can – the things that require an internet connection, they can do those things at school
if that suits them better. Other kids that have internet at home might
prefer to do it the other way around. So I think that’s – you got to get away from
this idea that one workflow or one size fits everybody and to me that is the real limitation
with that traditional Flipped Classroom Model that some people have is that you’re still
saying we want everybody to be doing the same thing at the same time in the same way as
everybody else. I think we can be a lot more-free than that and give people choices. Blake: I agree. And I think what you’re
all talking about really is some student centered learning is about putting the student in control
of the new – is that something that you’ve sort of encouraging your class. Like this
podcast, the other thing you’ve done around that or are you doing other things around
certain students and learning Andrew: Oh, no. I mean we have kids writing
Wikipedia articles and websites and blogs. I mean there are a lot of things that you
can – again none of those things – our teachers didn’t have choices about those
kinds of things before. But now, I mean I think the – it’s interesting
to me when I look at schools because we’ve embraced technological change I think in schools.
We’ve got computers and we’ve interactive white boards and projectors and we’ve responded
to the fact that of the technological changes over the last two decades but what we haven’t
really responded to very well is social changes that have come in with those technological
changes. And to me that’s the biggest one. This is
the first generation of kids since the invention of the printing press who arrive with a produced
content in the same form that they’re consuming I mean if you think about it when we grew
up, we can watch TV but we couldn’t be on TV. We could listen to the radio but we couldn’t
talk on the radio. You could buy the newspaper and read that but you couldn’t write in
the newspaper. There’re blessed people who produce content and everybody else just sat
and watched it. But the kids that we’re teaching now, they
watch YouTube videos and they make YouTube videos. They get information from Wikipedia
and they edit Wikipedia pages. They read blogs, they write blogs. They listen to podcasts,
they make podcasts and that I think is really exciting and we – teachers should – we
should be spinning in our chairs thinking about the possibilities that we have for giving
kids authentic audiences and publishing platforms that the current mediums of the day are easily
accessible to students. That hasn’t happened to any generation in
our lifetime and I think that’s really exciting. So to me if we’re bringing kids together
in the classroom and then they’re just sitting there and we’re standing and talking to
them, what a waste of opportunities. Mike: Well, that’s for sure. So talk me
through the process, how long do you spend making a podcast and what’s the process?
Obviously you record it and how do you edit it? Do you use word apps, do you use – how
do you – can you just run through just a real quick step by step on that? Andrew: Yes, sure. So for me, I use my blue
yiddy microphone and I pop that I bought for four bucks from Allan’s music, it sits on
front and I get all my audio set up and I just test to make sure that that’s good
and then personally I use either Audacity or GarageBand depending on what I’m actually
trying to do. And either of both is fantastic. So I’ll launch that. And normally I will sat down ahead of time
like you would for a class and I’ll make a bit of a mind map or point form list in
that line of what I want to cover. But I certainly don’t script the podcast. And then pretty
much I press Play and I start explaining the topic pretty much the way you would do in
a classroom. And usually I use the stop and start and stop and start and edit it and I’d
record something and think that didn’t sound very good and I’ll do it again. And I just
thought, you know what, I didn’t do that in the classroom. So I’m not going to do
it here either. So now these days are pretty much just click Record. And just explain the
topic and then click stop and I leave all the ums and the ahs and when I pause to think
about what I’m going to talk about, that all stays in. And personally I think that actually makes
it better. It makes it more authentic and relaxed. It doesn’t sound – you can tell
if somebody’s reading a script I think. It doesn’t sound nearly so real. So I do
– then once the podcast – once I’ve finished recording, then I’ll put a jingle
in the front and I’ll – which you can do in Audacity or GarageBand quite easily
just by drag and drop pretty much and then – and I’ll usually put a few sound effects
and things that are appropriate through the podcast. If I’ve used a particular illustration,
an illustration of racing cars or something you know, you get some sound effect and stick
that in there. So all all up, you know if my podcast, let’s say the actual recording
time of the podcast is an hour. It probably might take me two hours by the time I planned
it out at the start, set up my microphone, explain what I want to explain, and then go
back through and put jingles and sound effects in. Then I upload it to PodOmatic which is really
just a simple matter of – well it’s a website really. So you just go to the website.
You click upload just like uploading a video to YouTube, the same kind of deal. Once that’s
done, that’s it really. Then – so it’s – it may be a two hour process to get a
podcast up online on the iTunes store. Mike: That’s all that, how many people that
are downloading it and listening because there is somebody in the Doc who say that they listen
to many of your podcast and they really appreciated it>so obviously other teachers are grabbing
hold of the content, using it with their teachers. However, their students know sure it goes
worldwide so what sort of downloads are you looking at and what’s you reach? Andrew: Well, like at the moment you see I’m
not teaching this year, I’m speaking at schools and conferences and things full time
at the moment so I haven’t been making a podcast this year but even still I just left
last year’s slide up online and so I’m getting maybe 400 or 500 downloads a day of
those, like when I was actually teaching, I guess I always at that time probably responding
more to things that we are in the media or that sort of thing and so – but you know,
and actively encouraging the community and so I was often getting a thousand downloads
a day you know, back when I was in the classroom and doing it as my normal part. I mean it’s quite extraordinary when you
think about it you know, like don’t tell me the kids don’t want to learn, they do.
I think they just don’t want to sit in a classroom on a hard chair on Friday afternoon
and be told what to learn, when to learn, how fast to learn it, from whom to learn it. They have a choice of going on to the internet
and finding someone that explains it in a way that resonates with them and they can
stop and start and pause and listen for as long as they want and you know, it’s human
that want to learn and I just think that resonates with the way you know, they said that young
people don’t expect to have to wait for music, they just you know, you listen to it
on demand and videos you watch on YouTube on demand and books you download them and
read them on demand, to me it’s consistent with the way that young people expect access
to things and they respond to it with enthusiasm given that opportunity. Blake: Certainly, it’s the future I think,
that’s for sure. It’s been really inspiring listening to you and I think what you are
doing is amazing and just the issue you are doing it. I mean you’ve been – you sort
of have this idea before, or was it the mainstream before, all these things came through and
I think you are in a better position than anyone to look at what is working, what’s
not working, it’s been great just sort of listening to it all and thank you so much
for coming on and talking to us all, it’s been eye opening to me especially, I think
I’m going to run some PD around just to have to listen to this, it’s been really
good. But what I would like to do, we sort of like
to run through what you’d be up to out of the next couple of weeks if anyone wants to
sort of get in contact. We also have the document going with the Andrew’s details and Mike
and myself in there. I’ve also changed my Google Plus account
which has been a traitorous nightmare that I don’t want to do but that lead scenario
as well that I was following you on your account. But yeah, I just want to run through what
you are up to, even connect with you, you got to be in the area or yeah. Andrew: Sure. Well, I’m just looking at
my calendar here because it’s getting – Blake: Hectic. Andrew: Yeah. So what have we got to – I
mean Nathalia next week and then St. Joseph out in Ferntree Gully but those, I mean a
lot of those things are sort of that so I often will just go with schools and spend
a day with their staff depending what platform they’ve got, we’ll look at various tools
so a lot all of the schools these days have iPads and you can make a pretty awesome podcast
or screencast or video podcast using an iPad as well so you know, that might be the focus
to the day, other times they might be using Windows PC so we’ll do that. Then usually that’s sort of a closed shop
then on Saturday 21st on speaking at the conference, a design thinking conference at Swinburne
Uni and then I’m in Sydney in early next week at the High Seas conference and there’s
a few more schools in there that’s something and then early next term, I’m just sort
of looking because I do quite a bit of work for critical agendas and CSE and Ivanhoe Professional
Learning and so those sort of PD delivering organizations and so if anyone was really
interested in flipped learning particularly on the 18th of August, I’m doing a flip
learning, a day of professional development around flip learning for Ivanhoe Professional
Learning that’s on the 18th of August, that’s a entertainments in there and on the – there’s
one for critical agendas around about the same time I think to – you there is on – actually
the 25th of the previous month so it’s 25th of July for critical agendas and that’s
at Cliftons in Melbourne right in Collins Street in Melbourne and those. You got – people wanted to go to those – you
can just book those via – doing any of the booking or anything so critical agendas or
Ivanhoe Professional learning, they manage all that sort of thing. I just tuned up on the day and do my thing
and show the people cools tools and workflows that you know, because some of the times it’s
just not even the tools, like the tools are one thing but there’s a lot of technique
involved in making it. You can hear – some people make podcast and they’re really boring
and kids don’t want to listen to them. So you know, there’s no magic in a podcast,
if you make a boring podcast, kids won’t like that anymore than they’ll like a boring
lesson in the classroom. So I think there’s certainly techniques
and strategies so we spend time looking at those sorts of things as well as just the
technology and the websites to use, and then of course we also consider what you do in
the classroom with all that time you free up because in a lot of ways that’s the exciting
part just like a classroom model you know we tend to think about all the gadgets and
the tools and the websites. But in reality, what’s really exciting is
that if you take a lot of what we used to in the classroom and out of the classroom,
now you’ve got all these class time to reallocate to something more important and that I think
is when things get really exciting. That could give you a bit of an idea but if
anyone wanted – like if anyone wanted a more detailed list of where it will be especially
for those ones that are open to the public, they can feel free to shoot me an email or
tweet and I’ll sit and I’ll reply to that. Mike: That’s great. So yeah, your details
are in that doc. So if you want to go to that and check it out guys, there are lots of opportunities
to do that so just in case you’ve missed it at the beginning, it’s www.bit.lyutbs01,
that will take you through to that doc that we are talking about that has all our details
in it which is great. Just in case people want to catch me, I’m
going to be in New Zealand for the next two weeks so in Auckland, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
then in Wellington in Thursday and Friday, Christchurch on Monday and then Queenstown
on Tuesday and Wednesday so that’s obviously the next couple of weeks and obviously these
are evergreen and people might hit this a little bit later and we’ll write obviously
– if you want to catch up on that, then shoot me an email at that email address in
the document and we’ll tell you. I think New Zealand, I’m sorry Auckland
is pretty much booked out. There’s a little bit of space in Wellington and on Christchurch
in Queenstown so you know, New Zealand teacher if you want to get in on that we are going
to do a one day Google Apps discovery day and a one day master class so if you want
to get on that, that would be fantastic. Keep an eye up for an email from me. We are
just in the process of changing form Teacher’s training international across to using www.technologybetter.com
that’s just being designed up by – I’ve just give it to a team of coders to do so
they are going to put that site up. Hopefully in the next three or four days it should be
live so keep an eye out for that. Next fortnight, we are going to bring in a
few different trainers who are doing some great things from all around Australia and
we’ve got some pretty exciting announcements to make at our next fortnight so make sure
you stick around for that and be a part of that one because we’ve got some good stuff,
we’ve got a planed for you coming up. So Andrew, I just want to thank you being
a part of today, it’s been great. Andrew I really appreciate your passion and a lot
of what you said has really resonated in terms of how students should think and work and
how teachers can relate to students, and honestly I mean this could have gone on for hours and
I would have been more than happy to just sit here and listen. So I think maybe we should
try and you back on for a round two later on. Andrew: Thanks for having me. Mike: It’s a pleasure. And once again everyone thanks for watching
and we appreciate you being a part of the community. I’m going to hang around and
just answer some questions in our Google Doc for a few minutes so if you’ve got any last
minute questions throw them into that Doc and I’ll make sure that I answer them and
we’ll also send you out an email with all the show notes, the recordings, the audio,
the transcript and all of that. So have a great evening everyone and we’ll
see you on the next time. Blake: See you.

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