One of the questions that I get asked more often than just about any is, “How can I record a podcast using my Chromebook?” There are many limitations to Chromebooks when it comes to recording audio and video. This is mostly due to the fact that there is no hard drive to store and convert the large media files. Where there are a few great applications for recording audio as referenced here in a recent post from Richard Byrne and Free Tech for Teachers, I wanted to showcase how two of these can be used to create not just audio recordings, but actual podcasts that can be subscribed to by your school community.
Two Great Applications
Although Vocaroo has been around for quite some time now, I recently learned about this fantastic website and recording application after doing some research on this very topic. Vocaroo provides users with a free, web-based application to record audio and share it with others. One nice feature of Vocaroo is the ability to both download your audio files directly to a hard drive and, (if on a Chromebook) provide your audience a link on Vocaroo where they can listen to the audio file directly. Where this has many advantages, one downside is that the audio files (unless downloaded and saved) are only stored on Vocaroo's servers for a reported “few months” according to their FAQ page.
When working with young students, this is a great application to teach basic audio recording. More important, by working with recorded audio, what you are really doing is teaching your students how to have a conversation, how to listen, and how to provide positive reinforcement for others opinions. These are all great Digital Citizenship skills that can never be taught too early.
Another application that provides a pretty clean audio recording for students is Twisted Wave. This has some upside to using Vocaroo in that it allows users to download the audio file directly into Google Drive, however, it is a bit more complicated and I couldn't at this point recommend it for our youngest learners.
In addition to being able to export audio files into your hard drive, Sound or Google Drive, Twisted Wave also provides you the ability to import audio files for simple editing. This is actually a great way for Twisted Wave and Vocaroo to work together.
From Audio Recording … To Podcast Creation
If you are looking to take your audio and turn it into a true subscribable podcast that has the potential to be listed in iTunes or the Google Play Store, I would look into using either one of these applications as a base for your recording. Twisted Wave of course gives you the advantage of having an audio editor to trim and perfect your recording. For more information about how to get your audio recordings into one of several podcasting platforms, please visit this post or one of the many posts on EducationalPodcasting.tips.
Sharing With Your Audience
Whether you decide to open your audio recordings to a global audience on iTunes, or simply want to help your students create educational assignments in their favorite Foreign Language classes, these two applications are certainly worth looking into. They are both easy to use and are perfect for any Google Apps or Office 365 based classroom.