Maguth, B.M., & Elliott, J. (2009-2010). Using Podcasts to develop a global perspective . ISTE, 37(February No. 5), Retrieved from http://www.iste.org/AM/Template.cfm Section=February_No_5_4&Template=/MembersOnly.cfm&NavMenuID=4495&ContentID=25244&DirectListComboInd=D
In this article, Brad M. Maguth and Jeff Elliott, integrates many different subject matters under one “umbrella.” The students learn about global issues, different cultures and their different point of views on these issues. They also learn about different forms of communication. For the purpose of this project, the students use the debate as a format for discussion and teaching. While researching the different subject matters for the debate, the students learn about diverse cultures and their different points of view regarding these global issues. The choice of technology to record the debate is the podcast. By finally posting the results of the debate on the internet, these students are able to reach an audience that reaches much further than the class room and their own parents. It also teaches them a sense of responsibility when it comes to showcasing accurate information.
This way of teaching showed a lot of creativity and it really took the meaning of education to a different level. When you role play and put yourself in somebody else’s “shoes,” you all of a sudden open up the door to a greater sense of understanding and possibly a greater willingness to understand. The use of the podcast and the internet forces you to think about the information you put on the internet. These students really crossed the boarders at all levels. Not only did they explore different cultures and their points of views on these serious global issues but they also tried to share their findings and conclusions of the result globally using the internet. I think it was great how the teachers used many different communication channels for this project. Research, debate, creating a script, journal taking, technology etc. I know I would have enjoyed being in this class.
Can this format be used to engage in discussions regarding global issues with students in the same grade level from different countries?
I believe there are no boundaries today. The internet has opened up a great opportunity to bridge cultures. What better way than to start in the class room. It would be great if my 10th grader, while studying AP European History, could engage in discussions live with 10th graders from different European countries. What if you had cooperating schools, one from France, one from Italy and one from England, you would have some chosen topics picked by the teacher representative from each school. Then you would have a chosen format for the discussion etc. I believe the students would learn so much more because it all becomes real. When reading about France in a history book, it could easily become very boring for many students that do not necessarily like reading very much. But if they can be engaged in a live discussion so they can find a greater purpose for reading, they will be more motivated.
Should every high school have as a requirement to take a class teaching the use of the internet?
As much as we use the internet today, I am surprised that there are no classes teaching students the responsibility that comes along with the use of the internet as well as teaching students the endless possibilities on how to use the internet. Being in this class, I have already learned a lot. Most things I learn are things I did not even know was available. It has opened up a new window to technology and its advantages. Internet use should be part of the curriculum today. Every student should know how to use a search engine and how to look up information. The way these teachers used the internet as part of teaching was to these students’advantage.