It's no secret that we love podcasts around here. Have you seen our products page? But seriously, we can't get enough of them. I listen to them as I work in my classroom, on long car rides or just for fun throughout the day. But my favorite way to use them is to share them in class. I think it helps engage the students (and makes them think I'm in-the-know with digital stuff!) as well as taking some weight off my shoulders for lesson planning. I can just focus on discussions and learning and leave the production to the great podcasters out there!
1. The History Chicks
These ladies are fantastic. They cover historically influential women and do a great job putting each podcasts' feature into the timeline of history and the context of their time period. I use this mainly in my English classes. Here's a few of my favorite episodes:
2. Renaissance English History Podcast
This is a great resource when teaching the Elizabethan era and putting Shakespeare's work into context. I turn to this when I need a quick refresher on Renaissance topics. Each episode is pretty short, so it makes it easy to integrate into a day's lesson plan without taking up the entire class period. Here's a couple I recommend:
3. You Must Remember This
This is one I listen to more for my own enjoyment rather than class. But when you're covering filmmaking history, it's the perfect resource. It covers American history, insider secrets and rumors of Hollywood in the Golden Age. I can't get enough of it. While I should just give you the entire list of podcasts, here's the best I've listened to so far.
4. Lexicon Valley
This one is pure joy to a grammar nerd like me. It's a fantastic look at language, culture and how they collide. It's one of the best ways to teach sentence structure and grammar usage rules with a historical twist. Warning: there is some language in a few episodes. I recommend listening before you share them in class. Here's my faves.
5. Thread Cult
Thread Cult is a good resource for my Fashion and Costuming History class. We use it to supplement various topics, like costume history and fashion culture. We found a few of the best to share with you.
6. Radio Lab
This is a recent find for me. While most of the topics don't directly relate to theatre, English or speech classes, I still use it. I think the sound editing, production value and translation into the reader's theatre genre is an excellent bridge to marry these with my classes. I'm working on creating curriculum with these. Stay tuned! Meanwhile, here's some great listening material for you.
7. Stuff You Should Know
These guys come from the same empire as our favorite Stuff You Missed in History Class. Chuck and Josh are a great hosting pair and make the most random, geeky topics accessible and exciting for my students. We've gotten to know them almost as characters and love to hear their banter back and forth at each other. I love to use the Body Language episode in teaching physical acting and stage presence. Here's a few of my favorite episodes to teach with.
8. Stuff You Missed in History Class
We've saved the best for last. This podcast has it all: history, culture, great production, fabulous commentary and consistently classroom-friendly content. This is my classes' favorite podcast so far. If you need help getting the ball rolling on discussions, we have some great resources here to get you started. But onto the greatness: here's a few of our favorites.
Have any other podcasts you love to use? We want to hear about them! Facebook us and let us know.