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Podcasting Using iWeb

Page history last edited by Carol Broos 13 years, 4 months ago

Podcasting using iWeb

Carol Broos, 4-8 Music Teacher

Sunset Ridge School #29

Northfield, Illinois



From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A podcast is a digital media file, or a related collection of such files, which is distributed over the Internet using syndication feeds for playback on portable media players and personal computers.


In order to Podcast effectively, a good understanding of Garageband is essential. There are some wonderful tutorials to get you started on HOW to make a garageband file on the Apple website iLife ‘08

http://www.apple.com/ilife/tutorials/#garageband for iLife ’06 you can use atomic learning




Have a .mac account, it makes it simple and for $99 you get everything you need. The .mac includes an email account, a drop box, idisc (for backing up additional files), and a public folder. (There are lots of other features; these are just a few)  Keep the ownership in your name; having the school purchase it carries a lot of strings. The more independent you are, the better. You have to have the website and podcast page up and running before you can send the Garageband file to iWeb.


Domain name, forwarding, and masking

For under $20 you can purchase a domain name that is easy for the students and parents to find. Passing out your URL that has a long address sets you up for failure. Try godaddy.com You can have a domain name in less than five minutes. Once you have the domain you like, you can set up for the domain to forward your site, then your original URL will appear or you can mask it. Masking keeps the URL the same no matter what page you are on within your website. Students cannot bookmark specific webpages within the site. Soon as the website starts taking off, remove the mask and now students can bookmark specific podcasts, webpages, and websites within a website.


Length of Podcast

Try to keep your podcast under three minutes. Many non-musicians are producing podcasts that are over fifteen minutes in length. We as music educators understand that it is too long. It is optimal for students to listen to the podcast and comment, all in five minutes.


Start small, let it grow!

Take baby steps, and let it grow.  A thirty-second presentation is fine. Start with a few students that you know will produce an excellent podcast. I started with a group of sixth graders who already knew what a podcast was; all I did was show them how to make one, post and comment.


It’s all about….ME!

Sure it sounds great, a podcast about Beethoven. All the parents, administrators, and music teachers really like it, and it’s teaching something that is important. But, it has no personal connection. Make it personal and involve music around it. The amount of “me” projects I submit include: students composing music with pictures around the school or friends. After the “me” projects subside, then you will get content as their focus. Just like the first time you went on Google, you looked at your own home and other important sites in your life. The first podcasts are like that. ALL ABOUT ME! Also, the students have to pick: pictures of themselves or their name. A little internet safety is employed. For pictures, students use clip art in Word, screenshot it and drag/drop into their Garageband. The art teacher at Sunset Ridge School has directed over thirty murals painted by the students, so students take pictures of the murals with music around them. Depending upon the purpose of the project, the music is composed first; at times the pictures are taken first.


Parental Consent

Parents sign an individual parental consent form for their child’s compositions and pictures to be on www.carolbroos.com Forms come back faster than the all official school ones! The reason, no picture or composition can be posted without the form. (Remember it is All About..Me!) The form is posted on my website (called Parentconcent.doc) You can download it and use it. It is a fairly standard form, just delete my name and use it for your own website.


Tech Tips

Before you “share” your Garageband file to iWeb, be sure that in the info under podcast track is correct and remove the full names. This will not be seen in the posting. When people subscribe to your podcast and download the files, the information that is on the Garageband “info” area will download, including full names and information imbedded within Garageband. The only way to get rid of this is to reshare the Garageband file with the new information.



The first six months no students commented on the podcasts. Getting files up and trying to monitor the comments can be overwhelming. At first, students will be more focused on their podcast being on the internet than commenting. The middle of year, encourage comments and slowly it will catch on with everyone. Walk students through how to comment during class and an internet safety lesson is taught. Don’t allow any full names, only first names. Check the website for comments and delete the ones that are questionable. Apple should change this feature; you do not receive an email if someone posts a comment. You have to go to the site or open up the program to see the comments. You can delete the comment through your website or using your password, on the actual site. Weed and feed. Students keep track of the amount of comments they receive. Allow them to comment on their own.


Having additional individual iweb sites

As students create websites, you will have problems, because only one domain file can be up at a time. Download the program iWebsites. It is a free. Then can post students’ websites through this. Super handy! For those who use Leopard and iWork '08, I now use Multisite for iWeb.


Backing up the domain file on an external drive

The entire website is on one specific computer. If your computer crashes (it’s a mac, not likely, but possible) your website will be completely lost. So, back up the file.

Home>Library>Application Support>iWeb>domain.sites BACK UP THAT FILE. It will not have the website name on it, unless iWebsites or Multisites for iWeb (that file is found Home>Documents>Multisite for iWeb data


The History of www.carolbroos.com

For three years I had a website from teacherweb.com It was web-based and simple. No comments posted, and files had to be downloads in order to be heard.  I was traveling to Japan as part of the Japanese Fulbright Memorial Fund, October 2006 and I needed a website for my follow-on plan that included a blog and podcasting. Three days before school started, www.carolbroos.com was born. Over the year, the website grew and grew with pictures, music, videos, calendars, and much more. It was so user-friendly, that parents were using my website instead of the school’s. By October 2007, it won a national website award for the best “student-centered’ website and 14,000 hits (Not bad for a school size of 295) from Center of Digital Education - Best of the Web http://www.centerdigitaled.com I was the only teacher, not a school to win. Students, parents, and fellow educators are on it constantly. I update it daily and parents know whatever is up on the website is current and not dated. It has transformed my teaching and I post everything on it and have become completely paperless. I also started www.beatechie.com, a teacher-centered website that I use when I present and I post teacher files from hands-on workshops I have conducted. I have many student websites as well, but two stand out. www.chordsville.com was created by a fifth grader (now is sixth grade) He composed a song through the Vermont MIDI project called “Superchord,” produced a video, website, podcast, and blog with his composition using students as the actors. He is currently in production with “Superchord II.” The other one is www.lazertron.net a game website with tutorials created October 2007.


Just contact me

The moment you start podcasting and posting, it will transform your teaching and your school. There are so many little tips, that trial and error is the key. If you have any questions or need tech help, please contact me at carolbroos@mac.com The article is also on the web, on www.beatechie.com > Just Thoughts>Podcasing with iWeb.

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