A Helpful Podcast About Teaching

I am very excited for a new school year. Pat Riddick’s message during this morning’s Chapel was awesome, and the music was as beautiful as ever. The year-opening talk by a master teacher has quickly become one of my favorite St. Anne’s traditions.

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I am going to try to use the faculty blog this year. I will aim to add some posts of my own and to read those that are shared by others. I think that the blog is a great way for us to share ideas, even when we may not have the opportunity to talk to each other in person.

To that end, I wanted to share a podcast that I discovered over the summer. It’s called Cult of Pedagogy, and it’s hosted by a former middle school Language Arts teacher, Jennifer Gonzalez. There’s also an accompanying website: www.cultofpedagogy.com.

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Podcasts have become my favorite new form of media. I listen to them while running or working in my garden. My favorites are the Slate Political Gabfest and Left, Right and Center (for politics); The Bill Simmons Podcast (for sports and pop culture); All Songs Considered (for music recommendations); Myths and Legends (for trying to understand as much about mythology as my 6th grade students); and Fantasy Football Today (when my priority is defeating my little brother in our fantasy league).

Now, I will add Cult of Pedagogy to my list.

Gonzalez interviews teachers, administrators, parents, and academics. She covers a wide range of topics. Some of my favorites episodes have explored classroom design, teaching the skill of narrative writing, grading, homework, and how to incorporate grammar instruction into a lesson.

She is smart, funny, and engaging. There’s a bit too much “ed speak” in some of the conversations, but the reason that I’m enjoying this podcast is that it’s usually quite real: Gonzalez has an authentic sense of the challenges and frustrations that we can face, and she (and her guests) have good, practical advice.

She is genuinely curious about how we can all become better teachers, and she asks great questions of her guests.

I look forward to listening to more. What about you? Do you have an education podcast or website that you recommend?

1 Comment

  1. mreed

    At your recommendation, I decided to check this podcast out during my own morning podcast time and selected Episode 94: How accurate are your grades? Thank you for the recommendation! I’ve followed the Cult of Pedagogy website and Twitter feed, but the podcast provides so much more discussion. I’ve been reading about grading, assessment, competency-based assessment, and standards based grading. This podcast — only 27 minutes long — poses basic questions about the design of graded assignments. It can easily be applied to any assessment. However, she also raises complex questions about how we assess the big C’s (creativity, collaboration, etc.). I am passionate about giving students feedback on these mindsets and skills, and yet this podcast helped me think critically about whether our feedback belongs in a grade or simply in the form of feedback. I’d love to discuss this podcast with any of my MS colleagues as we reflect on our culture of feedback and grading.

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