Susee Witt

Small Group Discussion, morning session, June 2: Jillian, Pat, Susee


  • Our group discussed ways in which different technologies might be useful and the benefits of different systems
  • We talked about the difference between Powerpoint-to-Youtube and iPhoto-to-iMovie-to-garageband
  • We talked about the different goals of podcasts versus "vodcasts"

Podcast in the teaching context

  • Use determines format!
  • We discussed the differences between pre-class and post-class podcasts; interrogative questions v. content-driven script; supplemental info v. something that steers students toward critical thinking; a podcast that serves as a reminder about previously learned content v. podcast that introduces new material
  • We thought about balance—when and why the podcast will be used will determine its format and script
  • We determined that embedded activities also depend on the pedagogical goals of the lesson/podcast

Best Practices for Student Learning, morning session, June 3

  • Students must go through at least one lesson in learning how to look at and talk about an image before I ask them to look at and talk about an image in the course of discussion.
    • That first image lesson must provide them with confidence and comfort.
    • I will usually begin with an image that is less charged (racially or otherwise) so that students can be more comfortable talking about the image objectively before we get to more culturally charged images.
  • Students have to have enough time to respond to questions, text and images before being asked to respond
    • Often I will ask students to respond to a big question in writing immediately when they come into the classroom. This practice gives all students enough time to have some kind of response, and allows the teacher to hear from some voices that aren't as loud in the classroom.
    • After asking a verbal question, always allow at least ten seconds (it's longer than you think) for students to respond
  • Often having students identify questions rather than always coming up with answers

Small Group discussion, Best Practices, Morning Session, June 3: Maria, George, Andrea, Susee

  • Do best practices in the classroom really translate to best practices in an audio tour?
    • Our group struggled with whether or not that is always possible
  • Maria: Giving students a takeaway Action Plan—some way both to see how the issue relates to them personally and how they can take action
  • Andrea: Giving learning a "story line." Begin with the simplest description (like Bloom's taxonomy); start with what you know, compare to what you don't know, and you end up knowing more. Doing is important for learning, and seeing is a form of doing.

How do we translate these to audio?

  • Pausing for reflective questions, often personal (ie. how could I address these same issues in my own neighborhood?)
  • Pausing to describe what listener is seeing
  • Begin with a question (Perhaps ask the same question twice, once before content is delivered, and once afterward.
  • Incorporate pauses into audiotour
  • include ENCOURAGEMENT to slow down within the script

We noticed that our best practices were very similar, but where one size fits all, the practice will hang differently on different populations of students.

How to incorporate group work into the audio tour?

  • "Think, Pair, Share": pauses would ask listener to share and compare with someone else.
    • Have listeners share initial descriptions of the object, so they can benefit from each others' observations
    • Potentially have students create their own podcasts/vodcasts, modelled off of the teacher's audio assignments.
      • Students can use what they create to potentially teach other groups.
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