Yesterday, 5th graders at the RM Bacon School (the Bacon Bears) got a lesson from Jeffery Bradbury (aka Teachercast) on Podcasting. RM Bacon School was the elementary school I attended from kindergarten through sixth grade. The class spend time preparing for the Podcast interview by conducting research on their scheduled guests: Dr. Pamm Moore, assistant superintendent of curriculum & instruction MPS, Dr. Spike Cook, elementary principal RM Bacon School, and myself. Jeffery spent the morning teaching the class the ins and outs of conducting a podcast, filming, recording, broadcasting, interviewing...and by 2pm it was "Show Time".
I entered the classroom a little before 2pm and could feel the students' energy in the air. They all looked like they were bursting with enthusiasm to begin. Jeff spent a few minutes going over last minute directions with the class and much to my surprise he then turned the entire production over to the 5th grade class. Students ran the entire interview-the camera 'men/women', the interviewer, the rest of the students all prepared questions for their guests. I was hit with my first question "Dr. Gentile, tell us a little about your small business?"....I realized these kids did their homework by reading this blog. The students had great questions for each of the guests. After the interview, the students "flipped" the session and asked, "Do you have any questions for us?" So, Dr. Moore, Dr. Cook, and I began asking the students about what they learned from this Podcast experience. The students shared their love for their own blogs - that's right, 5th graders are blogging, as well as what they felt was important about the experience of Podcasting. One answer stood out most...this experience allowed us (the students) to understand why your jobs are important to us. Wow, 5th graders articulated the value of each of our positions. They continued that the decisions we make impact the quality of their school day. They also boasted that their classroom blog has had over 10,000 visitors - that is more than my blog. I am so impressed with the students and the teacher involved in this project. Thank you for inviting me. Jeffery Bradbury, Teachercast, also did a great job - I would highly recommend other districts have him come in to teach their staff and students about Podcasting.
Also, the principal of this building, Dr. Spike Cook is encouraging his teachers to take risks and try new things in their classrooms. I appreciate his leadership-