The Podcast Section Of The iTunes Store
When working with gifted students, a constant need for teachers is to find interesting ideas and fresh inspiration. An easy way to find this inspiration is to listen to a variety of podcasts. If you aren’t familiar with this medium, podcasts are audio files that are informative, entertaining, and, best of all, free.
Podcasts are like miniature radio shows that can be produced by anybody with a computer and a microphone. Typically, they are produced and released once a week.
The easiest way to find examples of podcasts is through iTunes’ podcast section.
There are tons of technology podcasts, of course, but there are also podcasts out there for every interest, whether it’s grammar, language, cooking, or woodworking. Head to iTunes’ essential podcasts section to get a taste.
Once I began dabbling in podcasts, I Southern California’s traffic wasn’t so terrible since I had such interesting topics to listen to. I started to look forward to my commute as a way to tune in to my favorite podcasts.
Since you can pause, rewind, fast-forward, and start new shows at will, you don’t have to miss a second of an episode, or you can simply skip to a more interesting choice.
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Some of my all-time favorite podcasts include:
- Stuff You Should Know
- Freakonomics Radio
- Hardcore History
- This American Life
- And, recently, Here’s The Thing
You might notice that none of these are education-related. I find that my most interesting, exciting ideas usually come from the world outside of education. As a result, I usually listen to podcasts that simply interest me.
Podcast Listening Apps
If you’re at your computer, iTunes is the best way get into podcasts. If you’re on the go, though, there are a number of ways to listen on your mobile devices.
On an iPhone? Here are three recommendations:
- Podcasts is a free, Apple-developed app.
- Instacast is a more advanced app and costs $1.99.
- Downcast is also $1.99 and is my current app of choice.
I’m not an Android user, but here are three apps I have heard good things about:
I didn’t even touch on the most interesting aspect of podcasting: you (or your students!) can create and distribute your own pocasts through iTunes for free! Look for information about this in a future article.
Do you have a favorite podcast you listen to or a podcast app you love to use? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter as @ianabyrd.