Have you seen the school website recently? The recent posts have shown a subtle difference in their content. There is a post about a trip a class featuring an animoto slideshow. There is another post featuring video content, and posts with audio too. All these posts could have linked to the slideshow, the video and the audio but a revolution has begun in school...
After recent training events, and a refresher staff meeting on Monday, staff are beginning to embed content directly into their articles. It's brilliant to see. This is what the website was designed for - articles with animated slideshows and video showing right on the page. Articles with audio that can be listened to without leaving the page. This is just the beginning of much more to come I hope.
There is one problem with this though - staff are now catching up with me in terms of ICT capabilities, so I need to forge ahead again!! Fortunately I think I may have found something I can develop that could do just that.
I've had the audioboo app on my iPhone for a while now, but never really used it. I remember I recorded the ambient sound of the rain hitting the roof of my car as I sat in a rainy traffic jam last year, but that has been about it.
I decided to revisit it today whilst at school, and recorded the noise in the classroom whilst the children were answering some comprehension questions during their Friday literacy lesson. Once recorded, I published my "boo" (the groovy name given to the audio recordings you make). The recording is held on boos servers, but is tweeted to the school twitter account (@porchester);
That seemed to work well, but once the next article on the school website was published, the boo was gone from the front page, and the link not visible anymore. What I want is someway to put the boo directly into a post on the school website - and this evening when I was looking on the audioboo website, I discovered that I can now embed the school boo's directly into posts. Here is this mornings "comprehension" boo embedded into this page;
(It's a strange recording. The only sound you can hear is the quiet music playing in the background, the odd pencil being put down, and the sound of knees knocking into trays!)
Not only can a boo be embedded into an article for the school website, but recording is possible via the website too. This means that, if staff wanted to, they could be given the username and password for the account, log in, and record audio in their classroom. It might require some external mics, but it could be a quick and easy way to add more audio to the website. If they have their own iPhone, or an Android, they could download the free apps and record directly from their phones - making live reporting from off site events a possibility.
I am now starting to think just how audioboo could be used effectively in the classroom, and I'm tingling with the possibilities;
- Book reviews when a child completes a reading book
- Evidence of learning at the end of a topic
- Explanations of learning concepts
- Peer reviews of class work completed
- Minutes of school council meetings
- Instant 'podcasts' of events taking place in school
- Instant 'podcasts' of external events
- Audio of special assemblies
- 'Radio Show' recordings of playscripts
- Interviews with pupils about their successes
- and much more...
I don't know whether other teachers are already using audioboo in the class, but I'm going to ask on Twitter to see how successful it is. Surely someone out there is pushing this technology in education.