Three Creative Podcasts for Your Next Critical Thinking Lesson

May 26, 2015

While a murder case on the internet radio might sound like the last thing a teacher would use to support the implementation of Common Core in a high school classroom, the widely popular podcast “Serial” has instead served to foster critical thinking skills and engagement in the classroom for Michael Godsey’s students. Teachers can even buy the lesson plans he created at Teachers Pay Teachers.  Here are 3 other podcasts that can spur engagement and analytical thinking in your classroom:

For the Science Teacher:  “Invisibilia- How to Become Batman”

The story of Daniel Kish is amazing, but he thinks it shouldn’t be. Daniel is blind, yet he hikes, bikes, and teachers other blind people how to “see” through a behavioral process called echolocation, most commonly found among bats. Daniel believes that low expectations and social norms prevent other blind people from having the independence and abilities he possesses. This episode explores the connections between our biology and our social surroundings, and how high expectations gave Daniel Kish sight. (All audiences)

For the Computer Teacher: “Criminal- Episode 2 : Pants on Fire”

For teachers who enjoyed Serial, but are concerned that the content is either too long or too mature to include in their classroom, “Criminal” is the perfect alternative. Whereas “Serial” is a 12 part series spanning several hours over the course of one season, Criminal is created episodically and every episode is about 15 minutes long. This specific episode focuses on lying, and how technology is both advancing and limiting our abilities to identify the liars. (Middle-High School)

For the Language Arts Teacher: “The Moth Radio Hour: Doctors, Prom, and Ellen”

The Moth is a story series where storytellers share pivotal experiences in their lives, some hilarious and others heartbreaking. One particular storyteller in this episode shared a little of both. The first 20 minutes of this episode are devoted to Hasan Minhaj, now a popular comedian and writer who shares the story of his attempt to attend prom and his unexpected encounter with racism.  This is a story that high school students will find relatable, while simultaneously provoking conversations around empathy and forgiveness.  (Middle-High School)

Post by Charlie Deese, Implementation Coordinator


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