I’m currently three classes away from my reading endorsement from Viterbo University out of LaCrosse, WI.  The reason that I was drawn to Viterbo many years ago was that they’d offered classes in our area.  I’ve got my Master’s of Education through them, and it started with classes close by.  Well, that’s fallen off completely, and now I need to travel about 90 minutes to get for classes to get this endorsement finished up.  Obviously, that’s not always advantageous during the school year.  In fact, yuck!

My wife does a lot of driving and she’s always liked the books on tape/cd types of things.  I’ve listened to a couple and while I enjoyed one greatly (we drove to Springfield, IL and back with NO fights), the other didn’t do it for me.  However, I’ve always loved downloading podcasts, mostly music ones.  My favorites are Tiesto’s Club Life (a fairly popular DJ) and one called Groove Electric, produced by a DJ Steve Boyett (http://www.djsteveboy.com/groovelectric.html) that’s a funk/dance fusion.  DJ Boyett also produces a set of very popular music podcasts to run to as well that can be found on that website.  And yes, both are very free!

I’ve also been drawn to educational podcasts as I’ve embraced social media as well.  The three that I will download on a regular basis are Techlandia and Edu All-Stars.  Techlandia is a collection of fun personalities (Jon Samuelson, Allison Anderson, and Curt Rees) who talk educational technology.  Now, as you listen, you have to understand that this is not a real formal show with all sorts of laugh out loud funny things taking place.  But, all three are educators, know their stuff, and they have on some outstanding guests who bring powerful messages with them.  The Edu All-Stars’ format is a bit more formal, but yet, it works so well for the hosts (Todd Nesloney, Chris Kesler, and Stacey Huffine).  They’ve got a group of questions that starts the conversation, and the message goes where ever it goes!  They’ve also had some heavy hitters of education on their show, and again, the message delivered by all is a powerful one!  The third podcast is called Take 5 and it’s just that, a quick 5 minutes on some kind of educational topic.  It’s host, Dave Guymon, does a great job of giving us an overview of the topic and ways that it relates to us in education.  Currently, the podcast is on hiatus, however, there are at least 42 episodes to check out.

What I love about all these podcasts is just how real they are.  This isn’t something that is done up in a nice little package and shipped off, nope.  These are real people, educators and parents, who are giving back to their profession in a way that is pretty darn cool!  They talk about the issues that are relevant right now, about the tech that is in front of us, and about the relationships that have been forged through all of it.  These are all shows that I recommend to anyone who asks (usually not many), but I keep trying.

So, this month, as I spend six days, 90 minutes down and back, I get to catch up with old friends, meet new people, and get strange looks from the people passing me because I’m driving along laughing.  What else could a guy ask for? 🙂


By the way, all of the above mentioned people are on very active on Twitter, so as you are building your PLN (personal learning network), I’d add them in a heartbeat!