So once again, Barbara Ganley is teaching me as she teaches her students. And that is without question, as I’ve said ad nauseum, what I love best about blogs and the people that write them: I learn.
Barbara did a first podcast for her students and posted it on the class Weblog. It’s not long, but it’s such a great early example of what I think is good blog teaching moving to another medium. As she does so well in her course blogs, on her Podcast Barbara plays the role of connector and annotator as she highlights a particularly perceptive post by one of her students and blends it very effectively with a reading from Cormac McCarthy’s All the Pretty Horses. She situated the audio right next to the relevant links, so I was able to read the students post while Barbara read it and annotated it, and I have to say it was a totally different experience, listening and reading at the same time. That’s the kind of small step that I find so interesting here, the combining of ways to read text. I hope she blogs about the experience her students had with it.
I think it does, however, start to stretch the definition of Podcast. I mean, Barbara is not really posting this recording for wide distribution. It’s for a narrow-audience. Narrowcasting as it were. Just my humble opinion, but at some point, I think the whole podcast meme is going to be replaced by a bit more generic…like blogcast, perhaps? (Ugh.)
Ironically, I’ve been playing with a similar idea on my Tablet PC, the inclusion of audio notes into the text for feedback. I’m really liking the idea of being able to combine the two, and would love at some point for students to start using reflective audio notes to annotate their writing. Now if we could make that all happen easily in a Web interface…actually, I guess we can…