Camilla Elliott provides many useful links for podcasting on her Linking for Learning site. I took up her recommendation to subscribe to the ABC’s EdPod RSS feed. Now the latest EdPod audio files are automatically sent to my iTunes every fortnight. Love the idea of getting stuff automatically. It’s like someone working for me while I sleep.
I listened to ‘One long yawn? History in the classroom’ and pondered the podcast. What’s not to like? In this case, the immediacy of the interview through voice, the ease of comprehension for the auditory processor, you can listen while you do something else or move around (which helps my concentration); sometimes you can’t focus on the written text any more. You know the feeling; you reach saturation point. I like driving while I’m listening to good radio interviews. I think it helps me concentrate and digest information, to be able to look around or just look at something other than the written text while I’m assimilating auditory content. It’s satisfying to have all these wonderful broadcasts saved in your listening library, not to miss them, not to be bound to a set listening time; it’s the flexibility.
I love the interview: the interaction between the interviewer and interviewee, the dynamics of the exchange, the spontaneity. Andrew Denton is brilliant at his job. He has the gift of drawing the best and deepest from the person in the spotlight. His guests speak openly, naturally. The interview isn’t stilted, he doesn’t patronise, his questions don’t prescribe the answers. He’s intelligent, and asks surprising and often provocative questions. I think interviews and podcasts of interviews should be used more in classroom learning. People are a great resource, and learning from people outside the classroom is real learning.