For one of the final projects in PLP 10, we had free reign on what we wanted to learn about. We had to research and inquire. Then communicate this in audio form through our own podcast. The driving question for this project was “how can I engage and entertain an audience using my audio storytelling skills?“
As a blue sky project, this meant we had our own choice on what we wanted to learn about. The only requirement being good storytelling. As a basketball player and NBA fan, naturally I chose my topic to be basketball. The beauty of choosing a topic yourself is that it allows you to be invested in the topic. With basketball as my topic, I wanted to learn. I wanted to research. I wanted to tell a story. All because I loved the topic I chose.
For my podcast, I wanted to give a Canadian perspective on basketball itself, not just the NBA. This way, my podcast wouldn’t be a replica of the hundreds of other NBA podcasts out there, and I could really make it mine.
One of the most important aspects of a podcast is the trailer. To make an effective trailer, we listened to a variety of podcast trailers as a class. I found this activity vital to our learning and understanding of the project since it allowed us to have a baseline understanding of what good storytelling looked like that we could then implement into our own podcasts. I then created a trailer that encompassed each aspect of my podcast to give the listener a firm grasp on what would entail in my podcast episodes.
Each episode of my podcast had a progression throughout the different levels of basketball. I made it this way to listeners could easily browse the content based on what they wanted to learn about. My first episode was the history of basketball, how it was invented etc. Next came Canada’s impact on basketball. Third was high school basketball in Canada. Fourth was the future of Canada and international players in the NBA. Finally, the fifth episode was a summary of the previous episodes, and what basketball can do for communities.
A technique I used to keep the audience engaged and entertained was a trivia interview. I found that the interview lightened the mood of the podcast, while still providing value to the listener. As well as the trivia, I started each episode with a current news segment. This engaged the listeners as it gave a reason for listeners to tune in each week. The news segments also brought an aspect of realism into the podcast. Making the podcast seem like it was made by a real person instead of some random guy behind a microphone.
So what did I get out of this project? I learned important storytelling skills, audio mixing skills, editing skills, how to keep an audience engaged, and how to create something that I informative yet entertaining.
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