MFLE Podcasting Guide Film 5 Part 5.1 Audio on the Go. You are now coming to the end of this short series of films comprising the MFLE Guide to Podcasting. You've learnt what a podcast is, found out why you should give it a go, listened to some examples and hopefully gone away and actually produced your first recording. In this film you are going discover ways to record podcasts on the go or away from your own computer, find out where you can legally obtain music and sounds to add to your podcast and look at a couple of web services where you can use your audio files for specific purposes. First up is Gabcast. Gabcast allows you to record audio via you telephone. Here is a recording I made giving the instructions about how to use Gabcast. Hi this my first gabcast. First sign up. Next create a new channel which gives you unique channel number. From there dial the appropriate access number. For the UK it is a 020 number. Then enter your channel number and password. Select the required option and start recording. Once finished follow the instructions to publish. Simple to link recording to blog as Gabcast can embed your audio in your blog. You even do this automatically if you want. This could be used in a myriad of ways for an MFL classroom. Students with phone could call in speaking tasks. What a great way of recording audio from a language trip abroad. A great aspect of this resource is that you can use contract minutes to call. Gail Haythorne and Joe Dale have shown how this can be done. Gabcast has great potential for use in MFL classroom Gcast Gcast is a very similar service to Gabcast. the only difference being that it operates with a US telephone number. However yoy cal call the States for as little as 1p per minute using an access number from a service such as Telediscount. Gcast also hosts a podsafe music site called Garageband where you can search for and download music freely and legally. Utterz Lastly we have Utterz. First you need to sign up, then you call an access number dependent on the country you are in, you then enter your PIN number if you are calling from a phone which isn't registered and follow the instructions. The beauty of Utterz is that any audio can be automatically cross posted to your blog. Let's see how it works on screen. Dial number and follow instructions to make recording. “Hi there I'm currently making a series of films about podcasting for the Modern Foreign Languages Environment at learning Teaching Scotland. For this section I am looking at services which enable podcasting on the go.” Utterz is a simple service to use and it enable automatic posting to your blog. You can also send photos and videos via Utterz. This would be a great service to use on a languages trip as there are dial in numbers in countries worldwide including France, Spain Netherlands and Belgium.
Audacity Portable In the previous film we learned about Audacity. Unfortunately it rests on the computer to which you downloaded it. However if you have to record something and you are not at your computer help is at hand. Audacity Portable to the rescue. And like a well known wood preservative manufacturer it does what it says on the tin. Its audacity and its portable. All you have to do is download it to a usb drive along with the mp3 encoder and hey presto a portable audio editor you can use on any computer with a USB port. As an aside you can use Audacity Portable to convert tapes nd records into digital recordings, which could be useful if your department has lots of coursebook tapes hanging around. Part 5.2 – Podsafe Music and Sounds Now I want to show you 4 websites where you can obtain music and sounds freely and legally. Firstly Jamendo. Jamendo allows you to download music freely and legally and is especially useful if you need French and Spanish music. Although the artists make their stuff available for free the music is still licensed under a Creative Commons agreement, which means that at the very least you must attribute the piece of music to its composer, in other words give appropriate credit to the artist in your podcast. The second site is Moby Gratis. Its a bit leftfield and it takes a certain amount of effort to get the songs as you have to apply for licences individually, but it is well worth it as it is music by the internationally known artist Moby. He has uploaded a raft of his compositions to the website and made them available for non-commercial purposes, the slight draw back being you have to apply for a separate licence for each piece of music you wish to use. The next site is Sound Snap. Sound Snap is a platform set up to find and share free sound effects and loops legally. Not the kind of effects you can buy on commercially available cd collections, but they have been created by people for the express purpose of sharing. All you have to do is find the sound you want and download the kind of file you want, mp3, wav etc. The final site is Flash Kit. Rather than sound effects flash kit specialises in loops, which are short pieces of music which can be pasted together to create a longer piece. As in Sound Snap, browse through the different kinds of loop until you find the one you want. Click download and select the kind of file you want to download. Once downloaded you can then import it into Audacity and paste them together as you wish. Part 5.3 Voicethread and Voki Finally I want to introduce you to 2 sites which use audio quite intensively. The first one is a wonderful website called Voicethread. Rather than me explaining what a Voicethread is we'll let Voicethread do it. “Its a tool for having conversations around media whether its images, videos, documents or any combination thereof. A Voicethread can securely capture and hold an entire discussion on one simple page. One of the most important things about Voicethread is that almost anyone can participate, because there are 5 different ways to comment. By your computer's microphone or webcam; a regular old telephone, by text or by hand drawingsor even uploading a comment. There are as many uses of voicethread as there are pieces of media on the web.” As you can see this is a fantatstic resource. See Sharon Tonner's Voices of the World project which
used Voicethread to enable children around the world to share their languages and voices. Finally I want to introduce Voki, which allows you to create talking cartoons. You get to build your own character and then either record your audio directly, upload a file from your computer or type it in and Voki will convert it to speech. First sign in and then click create your own Voki. Customise your character and background and then add the audio in whatever way you choose. Example is one of my classes singing the alphabet song in French Vokis can be embedded in a blog or shared via email and even mobile phone. Kids really enjoy seeing their own character speaking with their own voice. Hopefully, future podcasters our journey into the world of podcasting has reached its climax. I hope that along the way you have learned something new and now feel enthused to give it a go. On the whole podcasting can be great fun, but it provides fantastic opportunities to develop your student's creativity whilst learning. HAPPY PODCASTING.