After downloading iTunes for free, selecting "Podcasts," selecting "Education" in the catergories menu, selecting K - 12 in the "More Education" menu, clicling the "see all" link at the top left of the "Featured" pane, I was able to look/listen/watch for podcasts that might suit my purposes.
The use of podcasts could be relevant, engaging and beneficial for students of today as they are already equipped with devices such as, mp3, mp4 and ipods. Kearsley and Shneiderman (1999) indicate that “an ICT environment, is best suited to providing a meaningful and authentic experience for students, one that can be configured to simulate the kinds of experiences students will face outside of the classroom.” (Kearsley & Shneiderman, 1999, in Marshall, 2007). Because podcasts can be downloaded and then added to these devices, students could be given an educational podcast relevant to a focus topic at school to locate, upload and listen to at home.
“Podcasts can be created from original material by students and teachers or existing audio files can be downloaded for classroom use. Creating a podcast allows students to share learning experiences. It provides them with a world-wide audience that makes learning meaningful and assessment authentic. Teachers can use the technology to provide additional and revision material to students to download and review at a time that suits them. The flexibility that such time-shifting offers makes podcasting a valuable educational tool.” (Western Australian Department of Education and Training, 2009). References ABC. (2007). Ed Pod. Retrieved August 6, 2009, from http://www.abc.net.au/rn/edpod/
Marshall, S. (2007). Engagement theory, WebCT, and academic writing in Australia. Retrieved on August 6, 2009, from http://ijedict.dec.uwi.edu/viewarticle.php?id=227&layout=html
Western Australian Department of Education and Training. (2009). Podcasts in the classroom. Retrieved August 6, 2009, from http://www.det.wa.edu.au/education/cmis/eval/curriculum/ict/podcasts/