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We invite you to contribute to these lesson plans with examples of your own. Send lesson plans, study guides, or ideas you plan on implementing which incorporate podcasting into the classroom to our educational coordinator at: [email protected]. We also invite you to join IAS's discussion group and the Yahoo! discussion group for education and podcasting.

High School
Lesson Plan
Recommended: 9th grade Civics/11th grade U.S. History

Objective: Use podcasting to create an audio scrapbook of the Constitutional Convention.

Students will research individual delegates to the Constitutional Convention. They will present a biographical dramatization of their selected delegates, speaking as if they are the delegates themselves. Each group will create dialog for their selected delegate. This dialog will include a brief, first-person summary that gives such information as the delegate's background (age, occupation, family history), his actual involvement in the framing and signing of the Constitution, and any other interesting facts about his life.

After each group has introduced their candidate and had him give his background via podcast, there will be an open question/answer session in which members of each group and the candidates themselves ask each other questions and answer in character. Students should be reminded of the absolute necessity for compromise during this time in history. There should be particular attention to the matters of states rights vs. federal rights and the importance of industry vs. the importance of an agrarian society.

A creative alternative to the part of the assignment where delegates answer questions and debate among themselves follows: Create modern associates for the delegates, such as a press secretary, a public relations person, and a group of advisors. (Since the delegates were all men, this is also an excellent way to give the girls in your class important speaking roles.) Have the delegates wrestle aloud with the issues of their day while their assistants and advisors give them political direction, help them shape sound bites, and show them how to put "spin" on opinions that may prove unpopular. This will allow your students to add a contemporary flavor to the delegates and the Constitutional Convention itself. This is also an excellent way to involve more students in the actual podcasting.

High School
Lesson Plan: English 9th - 12th grade

Objective: Have students create a series of radio programs based on a work of literature they've been studying. (The example I use here is The Great Gatsby.)

As a class, have students decide on several types of radio programming they would like to use to present some aspect of The Great Gatsby. For example: Talk shows, news programming, advice personality (such as Dear Abby), or an episode of an old-fashioned radio serial. Once you've listed several of these on the board, divide the students up into groups and assign each one a type of radio format to use.

Explain to them that they will be creating their own radio program based on The Great Gatsby.

Students will create podcasts that represent such shows as a news bulletin announcing the death of Myrtle or a society reporter bringing a "live" report from the party at Gatsby's house in Chapter 3; a radio talk show in which people discuss Daisy's affair with Gatsby; and a phone-in advice program in which Daisy seeks answers to her questions about the problems she faces in her marriage with Tom.

This is an excellent opportunity for students to explore the music of the period and find some of the songs the party-goers in West Egg would have danced to.

Bonus: When students are through and have posted this to your class or school website, notify other schools through e-mail about your production and invite comments and similar programming from other classes studying the same work.

Industrial Audio Software invites you to list podcasts you develop using our products on our web site. Gain free additional exposure for your students and their work. Just email at [email protected] for further details.

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