I enjoy podcasting. This is an activity that I took up almost a year ago as a way to share with my teachers. As an Instructional Technology Facilitator at a high school of over 100 teachers, I did not get the chance to talk to each teacher every day to tell them about different approaches, tools, or programs that could be implemented in their classrooms. I often found myself searching for opportunities to share with my teachers without overwhelming them, but the time always felt so limited. As I prepared for my first NCTIES presentation, I wanted to find a way that my teachers could get the information without being able to attend the conference. I often do PD sessions with my teachers during or after school, but I wanted them to access it when and where they might need it. So my first three episodes were created by pulling my NCTIES presentation apart by topic.
I was excited to have the podcast up, and I shared it with individuals who attended my session or sat down next to me anytime during NCTIES. Later in the month, I traveled to California to present at ASCD Empower 17 where I continued to share my podcast with others. The only people I did not share with were the teachers I work with every day. I’m not really sure why. It may be that I was afraid they may think I was trying to push something on them that they were not ready for, or maybe I was just scared. It was actually not until a few months later that one of my teachers came to a session I was presenting during our district’s summer professional development institute that I really shared my podcast with any of my teachers.
This is something I am still working on. While I am more forthcoming about sharing my show with my teachers, it is still usually when I am talking to them about a topic that I have a current episode for them to reference that I share it. My goal this year is to get it out to all of them and keep working to make it meaningful for them to listen. Because I still don’t get to spend as much time with each teacher as I like, and I don’t get to share all the cool things I find and learn with them on a daily basis my hope is that the podcast can lead to more discussions about different ways to integrate technology or discussions of educational topics that can expand our school’s culture of learning and sharing.
But at the end of the day, who do I do this for? Honestly, it is for me. Podcasting gives me the opportunity and the excuse to explore and talk about a variety of topics with a variety of educators from all over the world. I have a reason to get on Google Hangouts or Skype with people I admire and ask them questions about what they do on a daily basis and why. So as long as I am enjoying the process and the conversation, I plan to continue in this endeavor even if no one ever listened.