Ira Glass is the best coteacher

Submitted 5 years ago
Robert P.
Robert P.
Broome Street Academy Charter High School
New York NY, US
My Rating

My Take

In my class, we use NPR One to connect students to an extended knowledge base. While a successful classroom teacher has, early in the year, built a sense of trust in their students, wherein the students trust the teacher's knowledge of the content and its application, there is always the sense, even in the most trusting group of students, that the teacher is themselves an outsider from the real-world experience of the content.

NPR One connects students to real, relevant experiences of educated individuals that are connected enough, in the sense of applying, the content to explain it and imbue its importance to students.

All with the calming voice of Ira Glass!

How I Use It

I use this product in my classroom in a few ways.

For individual students, I allow my students to explore the archives to find interviews that either relate to the content in class or expand upon the student's own interest in and connection to the content. I ask students to take notes of the most relevant and important content, which they then share with the class, either through a slideshow or another visual/spoken medium.

For small groups, I use the product in a similar way, but ask students to collaborate on their project. Often, the requirement for the interview is that it must be more closely tied to the content of the class, helping to ensure that all students are better represented in their interest and that now students are left out. This activity also ends in a presentation.

For a whole-class lesson, this product often buttresses "culture days", wherein the teacher chooses an interview to share with the class, and by pausing the interview at critical points, students can predict the interviewee's views or respond to them.