Engaging Podcasts for Tuning Students into Learning: Social Studies/History Edition

This collection of audible delights will have students exploring a wide array of engaging topics that can fit into a variety of social studies curriculums.

In the current digital era, podcasts are great way to share information and build interest in a variety of subjects. Establishing a collection of podcasts that can enhance learning and be a valuable resource for prompting student discovery and inquiry surrounding a wide range of topics can do wonders for boosting a teacher’s toolkit. There are so many layers and fascinating stories when it comes to social studies and history that never make it to the pages of traditional textbooks. Podcasts offer a fresh way of learning about a bevy of well-known and little-known topics. As classes and/or individuals start to tune into these collections from our Social Studies/History Edition, a spark of interest for all things historical and civic-minded can develop.

Stuff You Missed in History Class– This collection by HowStuffWorks is summed up in the name. A great choice for tuning into some of the lesser known figures and events that shaped history. These could be used as pairings to more well-known counterparts being studied and/or a personal interest for students looking to expand their historical knowledge base. From Ancient History to Civil Rights and everything in between and beyond, there are lots of topics to pique any interest or era of study.

The Past & the Curious– Music and entertainment highlight the wide range of topics covered in this podcast that students of all ages will enjoy. Episodes run the gamut with topics including spies, George Washington, cartooning, and the Statue of Liberty. Mick Sullivan is the likeable host who has many guests on air to share different stories and perspectives. A fun and informative listening experience that will build students’ curiosity about the past.

The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd– As the longest running professionally produced podcast drama, episodes will not be in short supply. Listeners join Dr. Floyd as he adventures to thwart his nemesis Dr. Steve and all the while people and events surrounding history are explored. With a quirky regular cast and short episodes, this podcast can easily be integrated into a repertoire of activities and/or lesson extension options.

Listenwise– This platform was created as a program to enhance students’ listening skills. Topics include daily current events, social studies, ELA, and science. Teachers and students are able to subscribe and tune into podcasts and radio shows that develop their listening skills while building their knowledge base surrounding a wide array of topics. With its NPR partnership, this is an excellent resource for a variety of curriculums.

Revisionist History– An eye-opening choice for older students. This podcast goes back and puts fresh eyes on a person, event, or idea from the past. The three seasons have episodes that cover topics like Brown vs. Board of Education, the art world, athletes, diversity, and more. A great way to teach students about looking at differing perspectives surrounding history.

Youth Radio– Students are able to explore current issues via peer perspectives. This platform for the teen perspective began back in the 90s. There are currently a host of resources for students and teachers to explore. A great way for students to stay in tune to the world around them and become involved in sharing news from their own perspectives.

This Day in History Class– These 5-minute podcasts are great openers, discussions starters, and/or daily listens for building a base of interesting historical facts. Taken from Stuff You Missed in History Class these abridged episodes are a great way to generate an interest in history and/or offer a daily dose of historical trivia.

Podcasts are an engaging way to share information, create discussion, and develop interest in a variety of subjects. In our Social Studies/History Edition of Engaging Podcasts for Tuning Students into Learning, a variety of perspectives are explored on current and historical events and figures. In the classroom, at home, or on the go, podcasts offer an easily accessible and entertaining way to enhance learning.