Hello from sunny North Carolina. I am writing this post in between classes of 9th-grade English students who are visiting the library with their teacher. I often marvel at how many hats librarians wear, and today is an example of just how true that really is! From managing library services, testing students, helping with projects, and supervising our STEAM Room, the day started at a rapid pace and promises to end the same way. Yet, this post is on podcasting, so let me stay focused on that!
Sharing Library Stories on Social Media Platforms
Over the years, I have certainly accepted the idea that we need to share our stories using media platforms that are readily available to us. I frequently post to Facebook and Twitter to showcase library services at Highland School of Technology or to promote activities and events that the North Carolina School Library Media Association (NCSLMA) is planning. I love creating videos with the hashtag “MediaMinute,” and I have blogged about the Vlogs! Oh my goodness, the ways we communicate and share ideas are endless!
Taking the Podcasting Plunge
Now I have my sights set on podcasting! I have teamed up with Jamee Webb, an English teacher at Highland, to dip our toes into the podcasting waters. We want to strengthen our podcasting skills before we roll out the podcasting opportunity to students later this semester. Ms. Webb has some creative ideas for using podcasting with her students, and together we are going to explore some of those options. Jamee and I frequently collaborate on projects, professional development sessions, and district initiatives, so our podcasting efforts are rooted in our collaborative history.
So, our first podcast is going to be an interview with a former high school science teacher at Highland, Jessica Harris, who has written a book titled Real Science Experiments – 40 Exciting STEAM Activities for Kids. I will most certainly post a link to the podcast on my website (linked above) and on Twitter. You will definitely want to get a copy of this book if you work with teachers who are looking for fresh STEAM activities for students ages 8-12!
Here’s How You Can Help
We have purchased a Zoom Six-Track Portable Recorder, a microphone with a stand, and headphones with a splitter for the recorder. In addition, we are planning to use Anchor.fm for our podcast platform. Here is where you, the reader, can help. If you have a podcast at your school or you personally create podcasts, I would love to hear any tips you have to share with us. What worked and what did not? What have you found challenging about podcasting with students and/or colleagues? How have you promoted your podcasts?
Our strong AASL community of colleagues is an incredible source of information and support for all of us across the country. If you are able to share a podcasting tip or two, thank you so much and I look forward to reading your comments. If you are able to listen to our first podcast once I share it, I will certainly welcome your feedback.
Author: Laura Long
Laura Long is the school library media specialist at Highland School of Technology in Gastonia, NC, a 2017 National Blue Ribbon School. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Education from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and her Masters of Library Science from East Carolina University. She is a Gaston County Schools’ Delta Fellow, Pinnacle Technology Leader and member of the Pioneering Educators Team, as well as a National Board certified language arts teacher. Additionally, she is the President of the North Carolina School Library Media Association. She loves collaborating and helping her students connect with others around the world, so feel free to contact her via email or social media.