Download the handout from my CAJE 32 presentation:

Sample podcasts:





Jewish Podcasts:

Feed Me Bubbe
1-2-3 Jewish Kids and Me

A podcast is…

An audio or video (sometimes called a videocast) file, stored on the web, that is available for users to download to their computer, and ultimately to an mp3 player such as Apple’s iPod (podcast – get it?). A form of “push technology*,” this transaction (using Apple’s free iTunes software which is available for Mac or Windows) follows something like this…

1. A user finds a podcast to which they want to “subscribe.”
2. Every time the podcast is updated the new file gets automatically downloaded to your iTunes library.
3. The user can listen via computer or download it to their iPod or other mp3 player.

*Push technology: the user subscribes to the information, and the provider “pushes” it out to the user when new content is available

Note: many podcasts that schools create are really just audio or video files that are small enough to easily listen to or view on the web. Some schools don’t even bother with the whole “subscription” piece of it.

Before you begin your audio podcast, you’ll need

A way to record audio
  • Mp3 recorder (iRiver is one company that makes them) or
  • Microphone (I like Sennheiser boom mics or stand mics) or
  • Computer with an onboard mic (most newer computers have them)

Software to record into
GarageBand (Mac – free with Mac OS) For sure the coolest - really, it's reason alone to buy a Mac
Audacity (free, open source, for Mac and Windows)
Sound Forge Studio (Sony product for Windows)
Sound Studio 3 (Mac)

A place on the web to host the podcast files when they’re completed, so people can subscribe to them or access them online. This can be your own webserver or a free file hosting site.

  1. First you’re going to create your audio files and save it as an mp3 file.
  2. Then you need to upload and make it subscribable (that’s not a word, but I like it). There are several ways to do this – a techie way and a non-techie way.

The quickest way to record and create a podcast is by using PodOMatic. Directions here.

The techie way – using Dreamweaver or some other web design software. Note – don’t be scared off by this. It’s not that hard (I’m sure you can find some savvy 8th grader who can do it!)

Create a new document in Dreamweaver, except don’t create it as html (that’s what webpages are); create it as XML. This will allow you to define your own tags (you ALWAYS wanted to do that, didn’t you?). Copy the code here, changing the stuff that’s specific to my podcast to your podcast. Now, don’t yell at me if there’s some other way to do this – this is what I used and it’s working for me. Once you’ve put the code in your XML page and changed it appropriately, save it (it will have an XML extension) and note the URL that it will have once it’s uploaded to the web

Create a basic webpage (an html file) and insert a link to your mp3 file. This will allow listeners to simply listen to the file(s) of their choice, without actually subscribing to them. You can also put the URL of the XML file on the page in a line that says something like:

To subscribe to the podcast, copy this into your podcast software: http://www.schechter.org/middle/podcast/podcast.xml
That will allows listeners to easily subscribe using iTunes or similar software

Upload all three files to the web: the html file, the xml file and the mp3 file

Don’t want to do this the techie way? There are lots of resources on the web for posting a podcast using Blogger or similar blogging software. Check out:

Dummies Guide to Google Blogger
Making a Podcast with Blogger and Feedburner
Podcasting with WordPress

Once you’ve created and uploaded the podcast, you can go ahead and submit it to podcast search engines like iTunes and Podcast Alley. Then people who are looking for podcasts will find you.

Wow – that’s all? That’s all.

Additional resources:

My sample podcast on Schechter's website. We just received a grant from the Avi Chai Foundation to use podcasting with our Hebrew students and this is the test site
Radio WillowWeb
Learninginhand
Kidcast: Podcasting in the Classroom
Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and Other Powerful Web Tools for Classrooms by Will Richardson