SUNDERLAND — Ryan Copeland, a sixth-grade teacher at Sunderland Elementary School, wanted to bring the traditional school report or essay more into alignment with the way his students interact with information on the internet.
So, instead of having his students write a report the traditional way, he is having them present their research by recording a podcast or building a website.
Using a website called Soundtrap.com, the students can mix and edit audio and add sound effects. The students have been working on their podcasts for roughly a month, and plan to be finished around Friday, March 13.
“It’s a pretty extensive project,” Copeland said.
After encouraging the students to pick a subject that interests them, Copeland invited graduate students from the University of Massachusetts Amherst to visit Sunderland Elementary and discuss the subjects, which include space exploration, disease and illnesses, mental health as it relates to other illnesses and the criminal justice system, and the use of nuclear weapons. The sixth-graders then record the UMass students during interviews, producing audio for the podcasts.