Pull the room together


You may already have met.

She’s given this phenomenal #Learning2 talk as well as this one (a really really relevant watch for this time of the year)

Paula is an incredible colleague–and luckily you can learn from her no matter where you are.

This week, we sat down during lunch, and talked about her process for thinking about the classroom environment.  If you have 15 minutes, you can check it out over your lunch:

All year, I’ve been exploring podcasting as a tool for teaching and learning. More on that HERE.

Who could you sit down with today to preserve and curate a conversation for safe-keeping?




The Pod People…

Ten quick steps to get your podcast on:


Step one: Listen to podcasts

Get a ‘feel’ for good podcasting. See how different episodes structure their segments.

Where to start?

Try here, here, here, or here…or here.


STEP Two: Go analog

Map out your show.

You don’t need to follow a template (like this one) exactly, but you do need structure, more on why here.

STEP Three: Find a quiet space and capture a conversation

I use a microphone.  You don’t have to, but it does help.  You need a small space, with as little background noise as possible.  Try to position your microphone or your computer up high enough to be near to the face of the people you are recording.  I use QuickTime Player to record.

If possible, provide questions to your subjects in advance.  I make sure to keep a notepad nearby to quickly make note of any follow-up questions I want to return to.

STEP Four: Listen to the recording and look for soundbites and organic pivot points

A good podcast is well-edited.  That means you’ve thought carefully about where you want to bring your audience in.  Do you have a clear hook? Do you preface or underscore crucial points? Have you curated the conversation?  Radiolab absolutely nail this.  Have a listen here.

Be sure to keep your episode moving.  Watch out for lulls.  Segments can be short and snappy.

STEP Five: soundscape accordingly

Don’t overwhelm the audience, but be sure to tease out the tension, suspense and wonder. Here’s a great example of excellent soundscaping.

STEP six: use GARAGEBAND to create your own intro

How to do that? Use loops.  It took me less than ten minutes to create the intro above.

Alternatively, Audacity is a nice option--here is a start to finish tutorial.

STEP seven: creative commons-use it!

There are different ways to get music for your podcast without ‘stealing,’  Here are a few go to places for open use music:





STEP Eight: share the links too

When you post your podcast, share it in a space (like your blog) where you can include relevant links to the topics (or music used). Give your audience access to readings/viewings/listenings that shaped your show.  Slate Culture Gabfest does this on their blog and on their Facebook page.


STEP nine: make room for your audience

The best episodes ask questions.  There is space for the audience to think.  Many pro podcasters ask their audience for their thoughts after the show drops.

STEP Ten: stories matter

We love stories.  Don’t be afraid to start or end your episode with an anecdote.  No one does this better than this show right here.

So step up to the mic and share away.  

Did I forget a crucial step? Let me know in the comments below.


Make your PD audible.


What if every professional development experience was curated as a podcast episode?

How can we use learning to beget more learning?

After UWCSEA Dover Campus hosted this year’s iPad conference, I sat down with Keri-Lee Beasley and David Caleb to capture their reflection as a catalyst for a broader school audience.

Here’s what they shared:

Featured in this episode are:

Pana Asavavatana


The link to her teddy bear project is here.