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Screen Free Learning with Podcasts

The current school closure situation has forced many of us to adjust our usual educational strategies. We have been discovering exciting new digital tools and using familiar tools in new ways. Some of these may even change the way we work in the future when things go back to normal. However, one drawback of many of these technologies can be summarized in two words: screen time.

One great way to continue learning while avoiding the screen time is by encouraging your child to listen to podcasts. These are essentially free radio programmes which can be streamed or downloaded using most smart phones, tablets and laptops. Literally millions of shows can be accessed for free via apps such as Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud and many others.

Many of our secondary school students spent their recent Global Campus lessons listening and responding to Nord Anglia’s own brand new podcast A Little Bit of Genius. While some were already enthusiastic listeners, many had never accessed a podcast before and were excited to be introduced to this booming genre. Furthermore, the Nord Anglia podcast is presented by their fellow Nord Anglia students from across our Global Campus which has inspired some to look into making their own podcasts.

One issue students might face when listening to a podcast is what to do when their eyes are not glued to a screen. Our secondary students and teachers drew visualisations to reflect their listening on paper. Other options might include colouring in or doodling, going for a short walk, tidying up their bedrooms or playing with toys while they listen.


Five Recommended Podcasts for younger listeners

Circle Round: Dramatic readings of short childrens stories from around the world


Short and Curly: A funny and thoughtful Australian podcast about ethics


David Walliam’s Marvellous Musical Podcast from Classic FM: The popular children’s author and comedian explores the works of Beethoven, Mozart and others


BBC 500 Words Bedtime Stories: Celebrities reading stories written by children


National Geographic’s Greeking Out: Greek myths brought to lfe


About the Author:

David Robinson is a secondary school History Teacher, House Tutor and Global Campus Leader at NAIS HK. David has nearly ten years of experience in teaching IGCSE English Language and Literature and History. As a former Head of Sixth Form and a current house tutor, he has worked closely with students from Years 7 right up to Year 13 on both academic and pastoral matters and is passionate about balancing screen time and encouraging a love literature in teenagers

Global Campus offers unique opportunities and experiences to students through the worldwide network of Nord Anglia Schools which nurture new skills while enabling your child to travel, explore and develop a new perspective on the world. David Robinson say “As Global Campus Leader, I relish the opportunities it created for linking our students with a truly worldwide network of peers for connectivity, collaboration and conversation.”