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School Buses and Podcasts Are Incorparated As/In Classrooms

Turning School Buses Into ClassroomsPay attention to innovators. We always appreciate colleagues that jump from the traditional method of learning and teaching and look beyond horizon to give kids a new opportunity. Now two researchers at Vanderbilt University in Nashville are looking for funding their project The Aspirnaut Initiative, launched in April 2007 by Vanderbilt professors Billy and Julie Hudson.

In essense, what they want is to turn school buses into virtual mobile classrooms! They have already performed a successful yearlong pilot program. With a rate of 2,000 students per they pretend to equip more school buses with laptop computers, iPods, allowing more students to take math and science courses online while commuting to and from school. "Anything to make learning the thing to do!" says Uncle Jim about the greatness of this iniciative.

Now this is a geographical move. But what's happening in the classroom? There is another person following suit with research. Psychologist Dani McKinney from SUNY released a study where he interprets, students that received instructions from listening to a podcast did better than if they had received the live lecture.

The abstract is available online and Tim Holt speaks of the implications of new process of transmitting knowledge: "Students can learn just as well, if not better via distance learning or via podcasting, perhaps because they have the ability to easily review the lecture."

We hear too much about Education 2.0 and top educators are working hard in the field of Education, but what is the real implication and application of such work? Well, here we've seen only two of them. We have to innovate and make study a fun activity, so students don't neither get discouraged nor are bored!

Students need to love school, not hate it. Learn how to engage them through great speeches.

Picture: Et Elle Monte

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  1. Pod casts can be great tools in adult learning as well. They allow users to go back and relisten to parts they may have trouble with without "looking stupid."

    In schools, I'm sure the technology and flexibility is part of the reason they work.

    I imagine a big part of it, though, has to do with audio quality? I recall seeing some studies that showed student performance rose quite a bit when shools added microphones and speakers to the classroom.

    Most classrooms have awful acoustics. Someone in the back (or even middle) of the class may miss 1%-10% of the what the instructor says (my random estimate). That's got to have a major impact on both learning and attention span.

    On top of that, in my own experience I know speaking to a room and doing multiple training sessions a day is a lot different than speaking to a person. Projecting voice through they day is exhausting. I imagine a teacher on a microphone is a lot more energetic at the end of the day than one without.