PODCASTING AND THE 2016 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

ESSENTIAL QUESTION:

How can you use your voice to have an impact on the world?

LESSON PLAN AT-A-GLANCE
LESSON PLAN AT-A-GLANCE

Materials

Hardware:
Computer/Tablet/Mobile Device, Microphone, Headphones/Earbuds

Software:
Audio Editing Software (Recommended: Audacity for PC / GarageBand for Mac)

TV One Authentic Resources:

RMS Clip 1, RMS Clip 2, RMS Clip 3, RMS Clip 4, RMS Clip 5, RMS Clip 6, RMS Clip 7, RMS Clip 8, RMS Clip 9, 

Student Activity Sheets:
Analysis of a Podcast, My Plan,

Timing

Approximately 5 class sessions (may vary widely according to class needs and schedule)

Timing

Approximately 5 class sessions (may vary widely according to class needs and schedule)

Overview

Podcasting democratizes commentary. The word podcast is a mashup of iPod and broadcast. Because podcasts are simple audio files that are uploaded to websites and applications, anyone with a computer/tablet/phone can create one and publish it online. The quality of a podcast is affected by equipment, content, and forethought, but podcasts that are consistent and compelling – funny, interesting, revealing, original, controversial – find an audience.

This lesson is designed to encourage students to analyze the elements of a podcast and then produce one of their own. The lesson is focused on the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election and features Roland Martin Show clips to demonstrate various podcast elements and styles. The Roland Martin Show has a particular perspective, as do all podcasts. It is recommended that you provide balance by supplementing this lesson with additional materials (podcasts, websites, articles), so students can consider a variety of perspectives, apply their critical thinking skills to the content, and strengthen their media literacy.

As the culminating project in this lesson, students will be asked to create a short podcast that includes a title, music, intro, outro, and at least two of the segment style options discussed in the lesson (monologue, discussion, panel). Students may produce a podcast in pairs or as part of a team, depending on student interests and abilities and your class time and dynamics. Use the accompanying student activity sheets to help students analyze and plan.

Timing

Approximately 5 class sessions (may vary widely according to class needs and schedule)

Introduction

Have a discussion: What have students been watching and listening to about the Presidential Election. Why do they watch and listen to those programs? (They may watch whatever is on at home, may select things on their phones that are outrageous or funny, may look to serious news shows, etc.)
On the board or chart paper, make a list of the shows that students watch or listen to regularly and what students like about those shows.
Use the discussion as a pre-assessment to determine how familiar your students are with podcasts and adjust your instruction or create pairings or groups accordingly.

PART 1:

UNDERSTANDING A PODCAST: AUDIENCE, PURPOSE, SEGMENTS

Resource:

RMS Clip 1, RMS Clip 2, RMS Clip 3, RMS Clip 8, RMS Clip 9

Activity

1. Introduce the project: students will study podcasts and create one of their own. You may wish to locate a few appropriate podcasts as examples to play in your classroom, provide a list of podcasts that students can listen to on their own, or ask students to find one or two podcasts they like and create a class list of favorites. [Note: This is an ideal place to provide balance, as referenced in the Overview.] 2. Listen to Roland Martin Show Clip 1 , Roland Martin Show Clip 2, and Roland Martin Show Clip 3 as a class. Ask students to pair-share about the questions below and discuss the evidence (i.e., how they are drawing their conclusions). i. Who is Roland Martin’s audience (age, demographic, political affiliation, etc.)? ii. What is Roland Martin’s purpose (i.e. Why is he podcasting?) iii. What is the segment style in these clips (monologue/discussion/panel)? 3. After the pair-share discussions, have students compare thinking with a few other pairs. Select a few students to report out and have the students work towards consensus about audience and purpose. 4. Listen to Roland Martin Show Clip 8 and Roland Martin Show Clip 9 as a class. Discuss the way in which Roland Martin wraps the show and signs off.

PART 2:

ANATOMY OF A PODCAST: TITLE, MUSIC, INTRO, OUTRO, SEGMENTS

Resource:

Analysis of a Podcast, RMS Clip 4, RMS Clip 5, RMS Clip 6, RMS Clip 7

Activity

1. Review the standard elements of a podcast, which are similar to the elements of a TV show. Distribute Analysis of a Podcast and review the elements: Title, Music, Intro, Outro, Segments. 2. Play the Roland Martin Show Clip 4 or have students listen to it on their own devices. Encourage them to listen more than once as they complete the Analysis of a Podcast page. [Note: Students should make notes about all three clips in this activity on one activity sheet.] 3. Repeat the process above for all RMS Clips through RMS Clip 7, allowing the students to hear a variety of examples from Roland Martin’s podcast archive. 4. Encourage students to discuss their analyses and respectfully attempt to influence each others’ thinking. 5. Have students rank their preferences regarding monologue, discussion, or panel segment style.

PART 3:

PLAN YOUR PODCAST: CONCEPT, CONTENT, SCRIPT, GUESTS

Resource:

My Plan

Activity

1. Have students identify their concept and plan their content and production needs on the handout My Plan. The topic for this lesson is the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election. Depending on the timing of the lesson, students may podcast about the race, election day, election results, inauguration, or the upcoming administration. (Recommended podcast length for this assignment is 5-10 minutes. Students should plan to include at least two different types of segment styles in their podcast: monologue, discussion, panel.) 2. Once students have completed the My Plan page, host a progressive conversation. i. Have students walk around the room and meet with at least 3 other students. With the first student: demo the intro; with the second student: review the segment plans; with the third student: demo the outro. ii. Have students note feedback and suggestions from each conversation. iii. If students need classmates to serve as guests or panelists, this is the time to secure them. 3. Give students time to revise their plans after the progressive conversation. If students are interested in guests or panelists outside of the classroom, allow them time to visit or contact those individuals and schedule the recording time. 4. Encourage students who are scripting segments to complete scripts on their own before their recording sessions.

PART 4:

RECORD YOUR PODCAST

Resource:

Computer/Tablet/Mobile Device, Microphone, Audio Software (Audacity/GarageBand)

Activity

1. Provide students with a quiet space in which to record and set up a schedule for recordings. Students may need to record alone or may need to have guests/panelists with them. The library or administrative offices often have rooms that can be used for this purpose. 2. Give students a time frame in which to record. They should be encouraged to “keep rolling” and either keep the tone casual or plan to do some post-production editing to take mistakes out. (RMS Clip 1 provides a good example of a microphone issue that is talked through and left in, demonstrating the possibility to keep recording through mistakes.) 3. Have students open the audio software and run a test. They should record a short segment and check for audio levels. 4. Once students are comfortable, they should press Record and create the podcast.

PART 5:

POLISH YOUR PODCAST

Resource:

Computer/Tablet/Mobile Device, Headphones/Earbuds, Audio Software (Audacity/GarageBand)

Activity

1. Have students listen to their recordings and mark desired edits. [Note: students may decide to run the podcast without content editing.] 2. If edits are desired, have students make the edits in the software. Recommended software includes instructions and tutorials. Students may also find and use how-to videos online, furthering their media literacy skills.

PART 6:

SHARE YOUR PODCAST: PUBLISHING

Resource:

Computer/Tablet/Mobile Device, Blog/Publishing Sites

Activity

Podcasts are published in a variety of places: class/teacher/student blog, class Wiki, iTunesU, and more. The simplest way to publish a podcast is on a blog. If you have a site with and RSS feed, you can also share your podcast on aggregation sites, such as iTunesU. 1. Select a place for publication for this assignment and have students review the process and rules for upload and publication. (Follow your school or district rules for student publication online.) 2. If publication is not appropriate for your students, consider collecting the recordings and creating a class CD or thumb drive that contains all the completed podcasts.

Common Core Standards: SL.7.3 | SL.8.3 | SL.9-10.3 | SL.11-12.3 | SL.7.4 | SL.8.4 | SL.9-10.4 | SL.11-12.4
ISTE Standards: 3.b | 3.d | 6.b | 6.d

View the full list of standards here >

STANDARDS

Common Core Comprehension and Collaboration

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY
SL.7.3
Delineate a speaker’s argument and specific claims, evaluating the soundness of the reasoning and the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.
SL.8.3
Delineate a speaker’s argument and specific claims, evaluating the soundness of the reasoning and relevance and sufficiency of the evidence and identifying when irrelevant evidence is introduced.
SL.9-10.3
Evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric, identifying any fallacious reasoning or exaggerated or distorted evidence.
SL.11-12.3
Evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric, assessing the stance, premises, links among ideas, word choice, points of emphasis, and tone used.

Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY
SL.7.4
Present claims and findings, emphasizing salient points in a focused, coherent manner with pertinent descriptions, facts, details, and examples; use appropriate eye contact, adequate volume, and clear pronunciation.
SL.8.4
Present claims and findings, emphasizing salient points in a focused, coherent manner with relevant evidence, sound valid reasoning, and well-chosen details; use appropriate eye contact, adequate volume, and clear pronunciation.
SL.9-10.4
Present information, findings, and supporting evidence clearly, concisely, and logically such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and task.

SL.11-12.4
Present information, findings, and supporting evidence, conveying a clear and distinct perspective, such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning, alternative or opposing perspectives are addressed, and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and a range of formal and informal tasks.

ISTE

3. Knowledge Constructor
Students critically curate a variety of resources using digital tools to construct knowledge, produce creative artifacts and make meaningful learning experiences for themselves and others.
Students:
b. evaluate the accuracy, perspective, credibility and relevance of information, media, data or other resources.
d. build knowledge by actively exploring real-world issues and problems, developing ideas and theories and pursuing answers and solutions.

6. Creative Communicator
Students communicate clearly and express themselves creatively for a variety of purposes using the platforms, tools, styles, formats and digital media appropriate to their goals.
Students:
b. create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.
d. publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.