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5 Digital tools for podcasting in the hybrid classroom

When used as a tool for sharing knowledge and thoughts, podcasts become an innovative teaching method.  Teachers can create personalized materials for lessons, content for research and revision, fun facts, and guidelines that students can easily access on any device whenever and wherever they want.

Podcasts stimulate and promote creativity. When teachers assign individual or team podcast projects, students are engaged in an ample creative process. From planning and scripting to recording and editing, podcasts ask for active and creative participation.

Read more: Podcast pedagogy: Leveraging audio programs for learning

5 Digital tools for podcasting in the hybrid classroom

As a versatile tool, podcasts are the perfect choice for online and face-to-face classrooms, whether teacher-created, student-created, or an external resource. Although there are many podcasts online, creating your own allows you to address your students’ needs and help them improve their reading, listening, creativity, and critical thinking skills.

Through student-created podcasts, you can provide individualized feedback to learners, give them equal chances to express themselves, set the scene for self-assessment and peer assessment.

Read more: How to give feedback to students in the online learning environment

Podcasts are also a go-to assignment tool because they can be recorded at home,  where students have better control over speech anxiety, which is commonly experienced in a classroom, even the digital one.

Maybe you've thought about using podcasting before but felt overwhelmed by the plethora of online tools. Or, if you haven’t considered podcasting so far, let me introduce you to five digital tools designed for podcasting, which are intuitive and safe for your class:

  1. Audacity

    Audacity is a free, open-source audio software. You can record audio files, edit, add effects, export or import them and share your podcast on any website, social media, or your school LMS.

    This app is safe because you can only upload the files you and students create in the online environments of your choice, ensuring security and privacy.

    You can ask students to record themselves reading a poem or a story, an audio learning journal or a personal one to increase their reading skills.  Additionally, you can set the scene for introspection, reflection, and peer assessment.

  2. Anchor

    Anchor provides unlimited hosting for your podcasts for free and offers automatic distribution to all major listening apps.

    This is a recording instrument, which can be used as a collaborative tool. Users can create, upload, record, and edit audio files.

    Since it provides a lot of visibility in the podcasting environment, it is more suitable for teachers to create lessons or materials for students.

  3. Synth

    Synth is an app that can be used in educational settings with policies that protect children.

    Educators can create channels on different topics and invite participants through web links and codes to add podcasts, listen or respond in threads in audio format. Podcasts can also be shared externally on the platform of your choice.

    This app allows you to restart recordings if you are not satisfied with them, insert transcriptions of your files to double the audio file and provide text background for further practice.

  4. Soundtrap

    Soundtrap lets you explore creative sound recording. It’s perfect for storytelling, or collaboration, as it uses different recordings for every student.

    You can upload or download podcasts, edit, and add sounds or various effects. It comes equipped with an interactive transcript feature that automatically transcribes any recording. Also, all podcasts are stored in the cloud, so they are accessible everywhere.

    It’s perfect for collaborative projects, such as interviews or debates.

  5. Squadcast

    Squadcast is a podcasting tool designed for podcast interviews. This tool records the participants' voices separately, which allows you to easily edit each file.

    It works similarly to web conferencing tools such as Zoom and Skype, except you benefit from better sound quality and connectivity.

    Its features are helpful for teamwork as multiple students contribute to the same podcast. To avoid recording a podcast multiple times, students can edit each participant’s audio separately and then edit them together for perfect results.

Final thoughts

Podcasting is a familiar concept with students nowadays. Many of them like to listen to their favorite artists or influencers talk about topics of their interest. As teachers, you have probably discovered famous talks on various subjects related to teaching and education in general, too. Now, it’s time to consider podcasting as a creative tool for you and your students.

Read more: Podcasting in the classroom: The digital tool you should be using

While we teach digitally — partially or totally — leveraging podcasts will allow you to increase student motivation, provide personalized feedback and materials, facilitate self and peer assessment, and help them develop a wide range of skills in a fun and engaging way.

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