This is the first "thing" that is really intimidating to me. I'm kind of a run and gun type of person and there seems to be so much to do for this type of production. Don't get me wrong, I can see lot's of value in podcasts. I'm just questioning my skills and focus to produce this type of a product.
Certainly the value in podcasts can't be questioned? What a perfect way to instruct students who might have been absent or just didn't get the lesson the first time it was given. With podcasts, students can revisit lessons for understanding while they are home doing the project. Also, parents can see the lesson and assist their child based on the actual instruction from the teacher.
Podcasts are also a key component for online learning and can be embedded(see I am learning) right into the online lesson.
I can see myself and my students starting slowly with the book talks. I would love to put a podcast into our daily broadcasted announcement, to highlight new materials or the "genre of the month" books. It would also be a great way to introduce new staff to the building of students.
I found that I like the podcasts with both visual and audio content. I am not an audio learner and therefore keeping my attentioned focused on the audio content was a bit much. I was pleasantly surprised to hear on of my good friends podcast in the shared list for education. Sue Spaniol has long been a mentor when it comes to book talking and her podcasts were just as good as seeing her in person. I am not sure if it was my machine or the actual podcast, but there was no visual and I would have liked to either see her, or at the very least the book cover. Here's here link, check it out for yourself http://www.northville.k12.mi.us/hillside-imc/podcasts/.
Another booktalking blog, that I could send my students to for information, is Nancy Keane's http://nancykeane.com/booktalks/podcast_list.htm. Nancy also does a terrific website for educators and parents, with detailed booklists and content by genre.
Both of these podcasts would allow me a "simple and easy" way to jump into the new tool and not really have to be the producer. Once I get my feet wet, I may explore the tool of podcasting, but I think I have enough on my plate right now. This is impressive stuff and it challenges me to do better to interest my students in reading as well as other aspects of learning.