Introduction/Content:

Welcome to the second thing in 12 Things SWKLS 2019  This month we’re going to be learning about podcasts. Podcasts are basically digital audio files that can be downloaded and listening to on a smartphone, tablet, or computer. The word podcast comes from the words iPod (a personal music player manufactured by Apple) and broadcast. In most cases, podcasts are part of a series with new episodes being released daily, weekly, monthly, or whenever the podcaster makes new episodes available. These can be subscribed to so you can an alert when a new one is available. Some of them need to be listened to in order (like Serial), but a lot of them can be listened to out of order and you can pick and choose which ones you want to listen to. People listen to podcasts when they’re traveling, cleaning, working, working out, etc.

The activities for this lesson are due March 31, 2019 at 11:59 pm central time and are worth 2 credit hours.  Estimated work time:  1-2 hours.

If you would rather complete an alternate topic, please go to the alternate topic page and pick one from the list.  You are also welcome to choose past topics or topics from the first round of Things.

If you get stuck and need help, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Exercises:  (Due March 31, 2019 at 11:59 pm CDT)

Tools you will need:

  • A computer with a browser.
    • A tablet or other internet enabled device will also work for most of these activities.
  • A valid personal email address (optional)
    • Depending on which app or program you’re using to subscribe to podcasts, you may need to sign up for an account with an email address.
    • Since more than likely you will be subscribing to personal podcasts on a personal device, we recommend using a personal email address.
    • If you’re doing most of these activities on a work device then you can use your work email address.
  • An Internet connection.

Activity 1: (10-15 min)

  1. Read The Beginner’s Guide to Podcasts from Wired.
  2. Read How to Get Started Listening to Podcasts from How-To Geek.

Activity 2: (10-15 min)

  1. Just like reading, your favorite podcasts are going to depend on your personal tastes. Some of the ones below may interest you and some may not. There’s a lot out there, so try not to get too overwhelmed.
  2. If you’d like to find podcasts for specific interests you can always do an online search for something like “best library related podcasts” or “best parenting podcasts”.
  3. Podcasts may also be something you don’t like at all. They’re not for everyone, and that’s ok.
  4. Here are a few to check out.
    1. Library and Book Related:
      1. Dewey Decibel Podcast from American Libraries Magazine.
      2. ComicPop Library podcast from our very own Richard Brookman where he and his crew review comic books, graphic novels, etc.
      3. All Booked Up a library podcast from Buffalo & Erie County Public Library. They talk about books, movies, pop culture, and oftentimes are pretty funny.
      4. The Librarian is In from New York Public Library. This podcast focuses on books, culture, and what to read next.
      5. Adventures in YA . Librarians who talk about YA books.
      6. Book Riot a variety of podcasts about different types of books and book topics.
      7. More can be found on 18 Excellent Podcasts for Librarians
    2. Personal Growth Podcasts:
      1. Rise by Rachel Hollis
      2. Tony Robbins Podcast
    3. Just for fun/entertainment:
      1. Serial true crime mystery podcast. Fairly addictive, so be careful!
      2. The Rewatchables a podcast about movies you should rewatch and why.
      3. The Habitat a podcast about a group of six volunteers who are inhabiting a Mars-like environment in Hawaii.

Activity 3: (15-60 min)

  1. Subscribe to at least one podcast and listen to at least one podcast. Directions and options are below.
  2. For beginners or those without devices: You can just pull up the podcasts up above on a computer by going to each podcast’s website. Listening directly to them on their websites is fine, but you can also subscribe to them which will alert you when a new podcast is posted. Subscribing is optional.
  3. If you’re more of an advanced user, but new to podcasts follow the directions below.
  4. If you’re new to Podcasts and have a smartphone or tablet available, use your phone or tablet’s built-in podcast manager to find and subscribe to at least one podcast that interests you. Then listen to one. This will help you decide if this is something you can want to do regularly. If you end up being a regular Podcast listener, I would recommend upgrading to Pocket Casts ($4), Spotify (Free), or Overcast (Apple only. Free or premium for $10).
    1. For Android devices use Play Music. You can find this under Google Play or as an app on it’s own called Play Music. You’ll see a podcasts button under menu. (Note: if you get a popup asking if you want to subscribe to a streaming music subscription, click on No Thanks)
    2. Inside of the Podcasts section in Play Music you can search for and subscribe to Podcasts. Play Music seems to have a limited amount of podcasts available, so if you’re trying to find one and can’t it’s probably them and not you.
      1. Note: Google also has a service called Google Podcasts which is a bit better than Play Music. You can add this through Android’s Play Store.
    3. For Apple devices (iPads and iPhones), use Apple’s built-in app called Podcast.
      1. To subscribe to a podcast, tap Subscribe on the page for that podcast.
      2. To play a podcast, tap on any episode.
      3. To download an episode, tap the iCloud icon in the episode list.
      4. You can manage your subscriptions and play podcast episodes in My Podcasts.
  5. If you’ve listened to podcasts before, try an app such as
    Pocket Casts ($4), Spotify (Free), or Overcast (Apple only. Free or premium for $10).
    1. Subscribe to a new podcast.
    2. Listen to a podcast
    3. Manage your podcasts inside of the app.
    4. A lot of these apps, also have in-browser options so you can listen and manage your podcasts on your device as well as on your computer.

Activity 4: (5-10 min)

  1. Post a comment below answering the following:
    1. What you learned.
    2. What you like or maybe don’t like about podcasts.
    3. Do you see yourself listening to podcasts in the future?
    4. Have a favorite podcast(s)? Share it below!
    5. Reply to at least one other person’s comment below.
    6. Register for 12/2 Thing 2.

26 thoughts on “12/2 Things SWKLS 2019: Thing 2

  • March 7, 2019 at 4:21 pm
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    1. I have been wondering about podcasts, so I learned how to listen to them. I looked around at a few.
    2. I like that there is such a wide variety. However, I’m not really an auditory person. I’d rather see it. I prefer to be able to read the information so I can scan quickly through the parts I’m not really interested in & just spend time on the parts I want to find out about. I have been getting a Book Riot newsletter which I like so I tried the Book Riot podcast All the Books which they always talk about. I just can’t do it. I can’t listen that long & through all the banter to get the information I want.
    3. I may listen to some podcasts but I’ll probably be pretty selective.
    4. I did like Mo Rocca’s podcast, Mobituaries. I’d heard about it on CBS Sunday Morning, and I like his segments on that show, so I tried it & found it interesting.

    Reply
    • March 11, 2019 at 12:57 pm
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      I also am not an auditory person. I rather read the information rather than hear it. I can listen to an audiobook better than listen to a podcast , Im not sure what the difference is maybe because an audiobook is one person reading, and in podcasts its a variety of people talking.

      Reply
      • March 14, 2019 at 4:27 pm
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        I am totally with you, Karina!!! I like my audiobooks but I’m not so sold on podcasts.

        Reply
    • March 14, 2019 at 9:28 am
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      I think I’ll try Mobituaries – it sounds intriguing.

      Reply
    • March 26, 2019 at 11:32 am
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      I agree with everyone! I have listened to a couple of podcasts in the past and it has to be a topic that I am extremely interested in order to want to finish it. One of them was kind of upbeat and political but, it was comedy so you know how those go. I would rather listen to a go audio as well!

      Reply
  • March 11, 2019 at 11:45 am
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    I’ve listened to podcasts before but not on a regular basis. I think they’re a great resource for people on the go who don’t have time to sit and read.

    Reply
    • March 13, 2019 at 4:27 pm
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      I do most of my podcast listening in the car or while doing laundry. I find I can’t focus on podcasts or audiobooks while doing anything more involved.

      Reply
  • March 11, 2019 at 12:50 pm
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    1. What you learned- its cool to see so many librarians from all over the world trying this out and sharing their ideas and everything library world with others.
    2. What you like or maybe don’t like about podcasts. I’ve never been a fan of podcasts. I have done a few recordings for something I was involved in and I didn’t enjoy doing it one bit. While listening to podcasts I feel like I am obligated to just sit there, and just listen or cant do something else. It doesn’t intrigue me and I usually just tune it out or forget that I am listening.
    3. Do you see yourself listening to podcasts in the future? No!
    4. Have a favorite podcast(s)? Share it below!- I don’t have a favorite podcast !

    Reply
    • March 12, 2019 at 3:15 pm
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      Karina, I’ve decided to try listening to podcasts on my next long car trip when I’m by myself. Maybe that’s the answer for those of us who don’t like to sit & listen! I’ll be trapped anyway, and I get tired of the radio.

      Reply
    • March 18, 2019 at 2:28 pm
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      I think it’s neat to see even “our” Richard has podcasts he’s a part of! Podcasts are definitely the thing to listen to during no-brainer tasks! Long car trips just got interesting!

      Reply
  • March 13, 2019 at 11:25 am
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    The thing that I learned is that you can get podcasts on android devices.
    It is kind of like a commercial free radio, but sometimes its annoying because its not as formal as a radio program.
    It depends on what the shows i found post
    My favorite so far are RZIM :Just thinking and RZIM Let my People Think

    Reply
  • March 13, 2019 at 4:36 pm
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    1. I learned that there is a podcast for everyone!
    2. What I like most about podcasts is that I just started listening about 6 months ago. That means I have TONS of entertainment awaiting me! I especially like to binge and now that’s I’ve figured out the settings on my player, I can listen in chronological order.
    3. I have been listening to podcasts quite a bit recently. I started out with library/book-related topics, but found that I’m not interested if I haven’t read the book they are discussing. I have since discovered celebrity podcasts, and given my love of celebrity memoirs, they are right up my alley. Currently, I am listening to horror and folklore podcasts.
    4. My favorite podcasts are (in no particular order): LeVar Burton Reads, Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness, Literary Disco, and Lore (my current obsession). The Librarian Is In is good. I also end up on Armchair Expert regularly, when I like the guest.

    Reply
    • March 13, 2019 at 4:39 pm
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      I will have to check out LeVer Burton Reads. I loved Reading Rainbow so much! I am subscribed to the Librarian Is In on my phone, but haven’t listened to it in awhile. I need to binge. I keep thinking I need to listen to Serial, but I know I will get addicted. lol.

      I also can only listen when when I am in the car, cleaning, or walking.

      Reply
    • March 14, 2019 at 4:28 pm
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      Stacey, I’m not at all sold on podcasts but I am willing to try out some. I think I will check out the ones you like 🙂

      Reply
  • March 14, 2019 at 9:25 am
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    1. I learned there many more podcasts available than when I first checked into them.
    2. I like the variety, but I can’t seem to find the time to listen…
    3. I do want to try to make time to listen, as I think there’s a lot of great ‘stuff’ out there to learn about!
    4. I really don’t have a favorite yet, but I have subscribed to an astronomy podcast, The 365 Day of Astronomy, to get ready for the summer reading program I’ve booked with the Cosmosphere.

    Reply
    • March 22, 2019 at 12:39 pm
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      I am defiantly going to have to check out The 365 Day of Astronomy, that is so cool. Thanks for sharing that. Something that would be great for teachers too.

      Reply
  • March 14, 2019 at 4:25 pm
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    I learned there are a lot of podcasts and that podcasts are basically “talk radio” . I don’t care for “talk radio” so I am having some trouble with listening to them. I found one call “Good Christian Fun” …. not too impressed 🙁
    I really don’t think I would listen to them…I would rather listen to a book when I am traveling. I don’t listen to them at home as I get sidetracked and miss things!
    I might try out some of the ones that Stacey likes!! Obviously I don’t have a favorite and may never ….. lol!!! But I am going to try out a few more before I pass my final judgement!!!

    Reply
    • March 18, 2019 at 11:22 am
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      I agree about getting sidetracked, I can’t even listen to audio books, my attention span is just to short. My mind tends to wonder so I have to repeatedly go back to listen to what I missed.

      Reply
      • March 20, 2019 at 11:05 am
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        I agree concentrating on a podcast is a hard task for me also. Finding the quiet time to just listen is another issue for me but maybe I will make a true effort to listen to a podcast.

        Reply
  • March 18, 2019 at 10:02 am
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    Podcasts are not something that I have really listened to before. I enjoyed listening to the ones from All Booked Up. I’m not a big “talk radio” fan. I am a visual learning and like reading information rather than just listening to it. I have a Spotify account for listening to music. Thank you for opening up some of these ideas to me.

    Reply
  • March 18, 2019 at 11:15 am
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    1. I learned that podcasts are very easy to access, I have an android and plan to use Play Music to listen to podcasts.
    2. I like that podcasts are available anytime, anywhere.
    3. Not many but i have found so I like and plan to listen to regularly.
    4. Don’t have a favorite.

    Reply
  • March 18, 2019 at 2:05 pm
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    1. Didn’t realize they were free to access on about any device. I noticed my phone had a Play Music app (have actually tried to delete it before as I never used it), and never thought to explore it.
    2. Once I find a podcast channel that is my style I’m sure I would like it, although I can’t say I’d chose it over music or an actual storyline/audio book. I like that you can download them and listen to them anytime. It does have to be a mindless task if you’re wanting to multitask while listening to a podcast!
    3. I’ve actually listened to podcasts before without realizing they were that!
    4. Something I’ve kinda continued into adulthood is listening to Adventures in Odyssey. They have like a week’s worth of past podcasts available on their website if you’ve missed their nightly radio broadcast. Good clean kid-friendly story lines.

    Reply
  • March 20, 2019 at 11:01 am
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    I used to listen to podcasts years ago and have gotten away from it so it was nice to revisit again and see what is now available. The thing I like most about it is how easy it is to join a podcast on your i-phone. When I first started I had to download them onto a MP3 player and Janelle always had to help. It wasn’t an easy task. Time seems to be the problem on listening to podcasts. “Flylady” was my favorite podcast years ago. Her podcast was all about getting organized with your home and work. It is no longer broadcasted. One of the podcast that I have enjoyed listening to is “What Should I Read Next?”

    Reply
  • March 22, 2019 at 12:32 pm
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    I learned of several more library related podcast to check out. I listened to part of the YA one and a couple others that were suggested.
    What I like about podcast is there is one for everyone. I listen to inspirational ones, self help, diet, and library ones. I listen in the morning while I get ready for work.
    Yes, I defiantly see myself listening to podcast in the future.
    I don’t really have a favorite. I tend to listen to self-improvement or inspirational ones the most.

    Reply
  • March 26, 2019 at 11:44 am
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    I learned that podcasts can be extremely boring or way over the top interesting. You really have to search for one that fits you. I listened to one that was about the disappearance of a high school girl. It was long and very detailed but, if I was to watch a serial killer documentary on Netflix I would love it! Big difference. I may listen again in the future if I come across a podcast that just fits me. I have listened to an old neighbors podcast out of Fort Collins, CO. It’s called Easily UnAmused and it is definitely a comedy! Also, I noticed you have to watch the language that is used in A LOT of these and the crime podcasts as well!

    Reply

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