Audacity is a free, full-featured audio recording software program for Windows or Mac. You can download and install it from http://web.audacityteam.org/
. Using Audacity allows you to make longer recordings and edit your recordings as much as you like. Once you have created your audio files, to distribute them to learners you would need to upload them to a web-based service like Chirbit or iPadio.
Cross-Platform (Computer, iPad, Smartphone)
iPadio is very similar to Chirbit in its functionality – create an account, use it to make recordings, and host them on your own personal channel. Sharing by social media is somewhat more complicated, and it does not have a built-in email function. However, what iPadio offers is iPad, iPhone, and Android apps that make recording audio an absolute breeze! You can even record to your iPadio channel by calling in on the phone. Once the account is set up, this is the most convenient tool for teachers I have found.
iPad / iPhone Audio Recording Apps:
The App Store has dozens of audio recording apps. Most are free to try, and cost between $1-$3 to remove ads or access all features. I’ve tried many, and they all have their pros and cons, but my favorite for simplicity of use is Flexi Voice. For learners who are new to technology, I think it has the most intuitive interface, with large buttons and limited text. If the iPad has an email account set up, it allows easy sending of recordings by email.
iPads – Getting Creative
iPad 2s and newer have a built-in video camera. Don’t overlook this app! It’s easy to use and has built-in functionality to email video clips or post them to YouTube, FaceBook, etc. With the iPad’s ability to switch between self-facing and outward-facing cameras, it’s useful for making self-recordings as well as for recording others/the world.
Sock Puppets (by Smith Micro Software)
For a fun, light-hearted change of pace, try the Sock Puppets app! Make short video clips of virtual sock puppets while recording yourself and/or a friend. For the right group of learners, this could be just the thing to get them talking.
If you want to record audio over a whiteboard where you can make text and show images, try the Show Me! app. It is designed for educators who want to create instructional videos (think Khan Academy-style). You can also find and use other teachers’ ShowMe files.