My friend Wil helped me find ipadio, a wonderful, free phonecasting service that I plan on using next year with my students. (Thanks, Wil!)
Phonecasting is a fancy word for podcasting. The only difference is that you use your phone and call up a number to record your voice, instead of using a microphone and computer.
The advantage of phonecasting for teachers and students is that it is way easier than podcasting. Students can record their voice anywhere — from their home, in a car, and even from your classroom.
This year, I had students record phonecasts and post them to iseroma.com, my class blog (check it out!), using Google Voice. It worked well, except I had to manually post each of my student’s podcasts to my website. This took forever.
ipadio does the same thing but also posts your phonecast automatically online. That means I can have my students call in, record their phonecast, and within seconds, their thoughts are published on iseroma.com.
Next year, I’ll use ipadio to make reading more public. Reading is too private, too internal. Socratic seminars are a good way to assess how students are reading, but they don’t hone in on the reading process itself.
I’ll have students do think-alouds while reading a new text live. With ipadio, they’ll record the cognitive reading strategies they employ. As a class, we’ll be able to compare and contrast what different readers do when they get stuck. We’ll also be able to see how various readers bring different prior knowledge to a new text and what connections we make.
Even more compelling, students will be able to track their growth as readers because all of their ipadio phonecasts will be saved automatically.