Reaching out to students, podcast style

Karur teacher teacher launches new online initiative

A radio jockey with Kodai FM before taking up teaching in 2014.

Now in the times of a pandemic, P. Karthikeyan, a post-graduate teacher in commerce, has launched a new initiative this Independence Day to reach out to students of his school who face difficulty in accessing online classes.

Though online teaching has picked up momentum among urban students, lack of connectivity and devices still keep many rural students away from formal learning. This motivated Mr. Karthikeyan to launch a podcast-based digital teaching method at Government Higher Secondary School in Esanatham in Karur district.

The aim is to ensure connectivity to all students including those with access only to 2G supported mobile phones .In this intitiative, he had the backing of P. Marudhaiveeran, headmaster of the school, and his colleagues.

In the first phase, a series of digital audio files on various lessons was aired and stored by the school as podcasts. The audio link was then sent to students in Class XI and Class XII through bulk text messages.

Now, many students have begun to listen regularly to the audio lessons posted by their teachers on a daily basis on the podcast. Those, who have subscribed to the podcast, get notification of the new audio files.

“The lessons are available not only to those who have access to smartphones, desktops and laptops but also to those with 2G supported button phones. There is a mechanism to monitor usage of digital podcasting by students as well,” says Mr. Karthikeyan.

Without a doubt, his technical and practical experience with All India Radio has coem in handy to reach out to students in a smart way.

The podcast service has 7,000 followers. Students of many districts, including Karur, Dindigul, Namakkal and Tiruchi, regularly listen to the audio classes, says Mr. Marudhaiveeran.

The school has planned to launch a dedicated podcast service to blind students from September 5, adds Mr. Karthikeyan, recipient of ‘Kanavu’ teacher award from the State government in 2017 for using information and communication technology in teaching and learning.

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