Music on the Internet is fun and music in the classroom can be a great way to connect with students. One of my colleagues absolutely loves Pandora, one of the free Internet radio sites still standing and while Pandora is fun, it is difficult to select the specific songs which come your way.
This morning I came across playlist.com which allows anyone to set up a free account and put together a playlist of shared music. While I’m not sure about the copyright clearance of this, I love the idea so I started to think of ways my students could create a playlist that would connect with our studies and then post the list on our wiki (I played with the code and made this example). For US History, coming up with a playlist would be a piece of cake as there are thousands of songs that focus on history, but for US Government, my list was coming up a it short – yes, who doesn’t love I’m Just a Bill? (And the “updated take” on School House Rock for the Midterm elections is quite fun for a slightly older audience.) But I was thinking beyond School House Rock which took me to a search for political songs. This search led me to the Political Ideology Song on TeacherTube and I think I’m going to use it in my Political Ideology unit this fall.
Having students create a playlist or search for related content on TeacherTube and YouTube could help them extend their learning. On YouTube, however, some of the content may contradict that which is being taught in the classroom, so being prepared for a dialog with students about their findings would be wise.
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