Sept. 13, 2022

Celebrating 100 Episodes - E100

Celebrating 100 Episodes - E100

This week, we are celebrating the 100th episode of the EduGals podcast. We have handed over the reins to two amazing guests, Stephen Hurley and Doug Peterson, to interview us about our journey with podcasting and the future of EduGals!

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**For detailed show notes, please visit our website at**

Topics covered in this episode:

  • Welcome to Stephen Hurley and Doug Peterson
  • How we got started with podcasting and blogging
  • Why we podcast
  • The topic of our second podcast - can you guess what it was?
  • Do we listen to our oldest podcasts? 
  • Our recording process - from detailed outlines to what we do now (topic, separate research, just hit record and have a conversation)
  • Our gear - started with USB mic and a rubbermaid container; now using Rode PodMics
  • Our impact - greatest in our own professional growth; we see it in our classrooms
  • Listener connections are important to us!
  • Podcasting is a problem solving process for us
  • MoteCon - check out Rachel's session
  • PD sessions - EduGals is presenting at the ISTE Creative Constructor Lab in October 2022!
  • Our vision and why we stay separate from our school board
  • Four introverts walk into a Zencastr room!
  • Podcasting with students - start small, think micro-podcasts, build scaffolds
  • Staying fresh in the crowded podcasting space
  • Upcoming topics for the EduGals podcast 
  • Our publishing process and division of labour
  • Getting started with podcasting - equipment, ideas, just hit record!
  • Episode 200 will be on Google Sheets
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[00:00:40] Rachel: In this episode, we are celebrating 100 episodes of the EduGals podcast.

[00:00:47] Katie: We will be sharing in this celebration with Doug, Pete and Steven Hurley, who will talk about our podcasting journey.

[00:00:53] Rachel: Let's get started.

[00:01:02] Rachel: This week, Katie and I are so excited to be celebrating our 100th episode.

[00:01:08] Katie: Yes. And so we thought, what better way to do this than to hand over the reins and let somebody lead the conversation. So we've invited Doug Pete and Stephen Hurley, two amazing podcasters and educators that have kind of been communicating with us and then sharing some of our work through the years.

So welcome Doug and Stephen.

[00:01:30] Stephen: Thank you. It's great

[00:01:31] Doug: thank you for inviting us.

[00:01:33] Stephen: Yeah, it's it's pretty exciting. No one ever hands me the reins through anything.

[00:01:38] Doug: And it's kind of neat that you don't have the delete button in front of you. Rachel's got it right.

[00:01:43] Stephen: I am totally out of control. That's right. But we do want to talk to the EduGals about the work that they've been doing. Doug. I think it was you who first introduced us to the blogging and podcasting of the EduGals

[00:01:56] Doug: Yes. And I believe we had them on the show once and it's, it's, I'd have to look it up and it's difficult enough with two people talking without talking over top of each other. And I was sort of leery going into having four people talking, especially people that enjoy talking for their hobby. It worked out incredibly well.

If I remember correctly.

[00:02:18] Stephen: So you're a century old, Rachel and Katie a hundred episodes that is quite a feat especially in today's podcasting world and a busy educational life as well. What got you started in actually wanting to pursue the whole podcasting thing?

 So so, so Rachel, let's begin with you. Why podcasting and blogging. You're already busy educators. What would possess someone to take more time and get into both of those.

[00:02:44] Rachel: So Katie and I had been talking about it for quite a while. We, we wanted to help other educators and we wanted to, like, we were, we were both part of our tech team at our school and we wanted to have a wider reach and be able to create those resources that educators could access. And we talked about it for ages, but what really kind of spurred us on and got us going was the pandemic and the shutdowns once that sort of happened, Katie and I both went out, we both bought microphones, we got our whole setup and we, we just hit record and started recording from there.

[00:03:23] Katie: Yeah, it was one of those things where we're both pretty shy. We're introverted people, which is kind of funny when you're putting out a podcast every week. But, you know, we do have knowledge to share and, and we often help teachers all the time. So why not put it into some sort of recorded and written fashion so that people can then go back and reference it and have those support documents, so to speak.

Um, And it's actually, it it's been a really fun adventure. I'm really, really enjoying the process regardless of how busy we are. I feel like this is like our passion project. It's something that we really have joy for. And so like, it helps.

[00:03:59] Rachel: It's actually pretty funny, because we did originally start with, we wanna do blogging, but we couldn't actually get ourselves to write and get into the habit of writing. And so that's where the idea of podcasting came up is we thought. It would be easier for us to get started in and start to con create some of those consistent routines that would then eventually lead into blogging, which it has done.

And so I think that was a nice entry route into this whole world of content creation that we're kind of living in now.

[00:04:32] Doug: And Stephen said 100 is a, a pretty impressive number when you, when we think of all the podcasts that just come because everybody's got great intentions. And then all of a sudden life gets on the road and, and it goes away. So I've got two questions on my first one will go to Rachel on my second one will go to Katie.

Okay, so Katie, you can sit there and think, oh, oh my goodness. What's he's gonna ask me. Okay. Rachel, what was the topic of your second podcast? I'm guessing your first one was sort of an introduction to the two of you. And this is why I wanna do it, but I gotta believe that the second podcast it got real.

And so you probably had a pretty good idea of what you wanted to talk.

[00:05:15] Rachel: I believe. Yes, our, our second podcast episode was about Screencastify, which is one of our absolute favorite ed tech tools of all time. So that was kind of like the natural place for us to go because. Tech tools and, and using technology in the classroom are both strengths for Katie and I, and with remote learning Screencastify is an amazing, amazing tool to be able to integrate into your classroom.

So yeah, that, that's what we did. I had to look it up there for a second, but I, I had a feeling it was Screencastify and it was

[00:05:52] Doug: Okay. Good. So, so to Katie now, do you ever go back and listen to your first or second podcast and then take a look at where you are now and just sort of reflect on how you've matured. And I'm gonna put you on how have you matured? And I know Stephen is gonna wanna know about the gear. You can't, I can't believe that you started out with the gear that you're working today.

So how did you mature as podcasters and how did the equipment in your studios mature over the time?

[00:06:24] Katie: So I have gone back to listen to one and two and I cringe a little bit because it's so scripted at the beginning, we tried to. Well, we, we spoke ahead of time and we outlined things very detailed and had like this list of things that we wanted to talk about and it didn't work out very well. And I think that's kind of how we discovered that we like to set a topic.

We like to go off and do our own kind of gathering of information, but we don't talk about it together until we actually hit record. And so that's where a lot of the conversations are happening and then it, we build off of one another. And so we went from. And I think part of it was how nervous we were to hit record that we wanted to feel prepared.

And so we over Planed. So we went from overplanning to. I guess sometimes under planning, but it works really well. But, um, And in terms of equipment, I didn't start off with this equipment. I do have to be honest. I had a USB mic and a Rubbermaid container that was lined with pillows and blankets. And I was living in this Rubbermaid container as we were recording every week.

And so it's definitely changed.

[00:07:34] Stephen: I re I remember Derek Roder being up at an ed tech summit up in York region. And he was, he was the first person that stayed in my newly completed basement. And I had never met him before. And he brought the Rubbermaid container. Took the restaurant after the conference. And it was like a little confessional.

People just went and stuck their heads in there. And yeah, it's, it's, it's amazing. There is other technology now.

 but I wanted to, I wanted to ask you both about impact and, and how you. Assess impact how, how you step back, not only from an episode, but from a series of conversations and say, yeah, we made a difference there, or we are making a difference.

Katie, how do you, how do you look at impact and, and what are some of the, the measurements of that.

[00:08:18] Katie: So for me, it's, you know, I love it when listeners will email us or comment or have these interactions and follow up questions. But to me, it's also. Like podcasting is a way for me to work through some of the challenges I have in education too. And, and problem solve through, you know, what are some of the ways that I can improve and get better and move forward.

And so sometimes when I'm thinking impact, it's not even how many people are listening. It's how am I changing my own practice to become a better educator and to further my own learning and putting myself. I have to do the work every week to figure out what we're talking about and what works and what doesn't, what are some good methods kind of problem solving.

And sometimes that impact is, is more than enough. Like podcasting has become, I, I think a really good personal growth and professional growth for myself.

[00:09:06] Stephen: . Rachel, how about you? How do you step back from it all and.

[00:09:09] Rachel: I would echo everything Katie said in terms of it it's the same for me. It's reflecting on my practice, reflecting on what's going on in our professional lives and our classrooms and working through some of those problems. And then. Really taking what we've kind of chatted about and, and worked through and bringing it back into the classroom.

And I I've seen my practice grow as an educator over the past couple years with podcasting. So I feel like that's where our biggest impact. Is like Katie said, though, I love it when people reach out to us and we, we notice it more and more as we continue to publish episodes. I recently did a conference with Mote and found out that they created.

A new feature in Mote because of the inspiration from our work and our podcast and some of the stuff we were doing on, on, ungrading. So seeing that impact from those outside influences as well is, you know, it, it's amazing.

[00:10:14] Doug: Thank you for opening the door to Rachel to my next question. And, and I know, I know at least from you, the answer is going to be yes, that I don't know about Katie. So we'll ask Katie first and then get Rachel to follow up on. And, and my question is, have you ever presented together or individually at a conference or a district professional development?

Event, because I firmly believe that anybody who's a leader in technology owes it to the community to at least try to bring some new people online with, with your skills and attitudes and insights. So have you, have you done stuff together or do you do it differently? And I know in the case of Rachel, because I proctored her session, so I, I know that she did do an online session, but, but how about the two of you together.

[00:11:04] Katie: Yeah, so I've done both. And so I've done some sessions where, you know, I had Queens reach out in the summer and ask me to talk to some pre-service teachers based on some podcasts that they listen to. With an ESL focus, so supporting English language learners. And so I've spoken to pre-service teachers I've presented in my district.

Even before I was doing a lot of presentations and PD and sharing, cuz I'm, I'm a big believer in collaboration and any knowledge I have, I, I don't wanna hoard for myself. I wanna share it so that if anybody else can benefit, they should be able to. And so I'm big on that, but we've also done some conferences together.

We did a couple of ed tech, virtual conferences last summer. We did one for Vancouver school board in February, and then we're also doing one of the creative labs at ISTE in October.

[00:11:55] Doug: That's awesome. I love to see it paying back. How about you, Rachel? You have did, what did Katie miss?

[00:12:01] Rachel: Yeah. So I was waiting for. her to mention the ISTE presentation that's coming up. We're pretty excited about that one, cuz uh, we, we got wait listed for a little while. It's really hard to get into presenting with ISTE. So we're really excited about that opportunity. I've done lots of stuff on my own as well. This summer I took a bit of more of a break and I didn't really present as much as I normally do, but I have presented by myself at ISTE before.

I don't know lots of other conferences. I can't even think of all of the names, but uh, this summer I did do MoteCon because I, I was asked to present for them. So I did that one, but other than that, I've been pretty quiet this summer.

[00:12:44] Stephen: I wanted to follow up on, on something that Katie mentioned in, in the sense that you get a, you get a sense over time of who is listening, not just how many people are listening, but who they are. And you mentioned pre-service teachers and, and you may find you know, some of the ed tech course. Course people are starting to use you as part of their syllabus does knowing who is listening affect the type of content you tackle in the way you tackle it. Katie has that had an impact on, on the way you do things.

[00:13:14] Katie: I think a little bit of yes. And a little bit of, no, we tried to target it for Ontario knowing like that's what we know. But then we also, in terms of some of the tools we use, try to go a little more broad as well. Uh, We started. Mostly with just tools we use, but we're trying to kind of open that up, recognizing that not all boards and districts allow for the same tools.

So. You know, sharing more options sharing kind of, it is not the specific tool that matters, but how, you know, the purpose and, and what you're trying to accomplish. And so finding one that fits within that purpose is what's important. Um, So I think in some ways we have changed a little bit. But in some ways I think we've also just been fairly consistent in, in how we choose our topics in their relevance to kind of what's going on in our own professional lives.

And how we move.

[00:14:02] Stephen: So Rachel that you mentioned Vancouver and ISTE and all of these out of your district experiences and, and opportunities. And I know that you're both fully immersed in supporting folks in your district. And I think Doug and I have B both have had those roles at the district level of trying to get teachers that aren't not, not.

That they're not converted, but they're, you know, they kind of resist still. How do you feel about that? Knowing that there are still a lot of teachers in your board that may not even know about you uh, yet you're internationally renowned and, and sought after. How do you think about that, Rachel?

[00:14:42] Rachel: I don't know, I kind of giggle at that question because when Katie and I first started, we, and we do this very intentionally on our podcast too, is we do not mention our school board whatsoever because we don't want to have that connection between the school board and us. We don't wanna be seen as representative.

Of our school board, because a lot of things that we talk about on the podcast might not necessarily align with the vision of the board and we wanna be able to have that creative freedom to be able to talk about what we wanna talk about. So we did that very intentionally. and it's, it's funny because there are people in our board who will come up to us and they're like, oh, you're the EduGals.

Like, I didn't know that. And, and it's so funny. So yeah, I, I kind of giggle at that a little bit.

[00:15:31] Doug: I'm gonna start my question with a joke. Four, four introverts walk into a Zencaster room. 

[00:15:38] Stephen: Yeah. 

[00:15:40] Doug: And 


They have this conversation. So my question is going to be about kids. Very often we have students that are very hesitant to come forward and talk and so on. Where do you see podcasting fitting for them?

And I think it's easy enough to say, well, you just get them together, but we know that not all students are created equal. There'll be some kids that want to come in and take over. And then there's other kids. Come out of their shell and so on. So Rachel, how does, how does this work when you work with kids and podcasting?

[00:16:09] Rachel: I think lots of scaffolds and, and building up the skills to building out a full podcast. So it might start even at the beginning of the year, we, there there's one tool online. I can't remember the name of it, but it's a really simple audio recording tool. That's web-based. And so I might use something like that and maybe it's just getting them to record how they pronounce their name and maybe some like an interesting fact about themselves.

So like getting them to create these little micro podcasts and then we might build it up from there and start building out, you know, smaller micro podcasts about content related topics. And then. You know, continuing to build up those skills from there. And I think Katie probably has some really good suggestions about scaffolding for English language learners.

[00:17:00] Katie: Yeah. I actually started doing little micro podcasts with my English language learners last year. Because speaking is one of the areas where they are the most hesitant and the most fearful almost because they hate making mistakes and sounding wrong. And so it, it really comes down to, you know, introducing the tools, but only a little bit ahead of time.

So there's. Like I don't share it with the whole class right away. Like, that's not what we're going for. I do it as a, Hey, let's record yourself reading, and then I can give you feedback on pronunciation and letter combinations, et cetera. And then from there, when we got to the podcasting portion, it was, you know, I had a template and it said, start with an introduction of your name.

You can write it in a sentence. What are you gonna talk about? And give me three reasons why people wanna listen. And so they could structure it as sentences. Those who were more advanced in language had no problem just hitting record. And as long as they had those visual prompts, they, they felt very comfortable recording.

So I think it's just making sure you give options for those who lack that confidence and need that kind of visual to. To remind them of what they're trying to talk about, but recording is, is an awesome way to get kids comfortable with speaking, and also to slowly build up the confidence to then share as a class

[00:18:18] Doug: and what do mom and dad think?

[00:18:19] Katie: like my students, moms and dads.

[00:18:21] Doug: Yeah. When, when they hear their, when they hear their students podcasting and sharing their original thoughts.

[00:18:28] Katie: A lot of my, my kiddos have parents that either don't speak English or they have custodians who aren't necessarily totally involved, but those who do share it with their parents, I, I think they really think it's cool that we're actually getting them to, to put themselves out there a little bit and to vocalize their thoughts, especially because.

You know, a lot of them are very, you know, self-conscious of the way they sound in English. And so it's neat for them to, to see that development in their kids.

[00:18:55] Stephen: Rachel. I wanted to ask about that cool factor because podcasting a, at the very beginning was cool for some people. And, and there were some early adopters. Now it seems that everyone with a product, a book, a something to say feels they need a podcast. I'm not sure if it's a fad or not, but we know that numbers still continue to grow and uh, probably will into the foreseeable future.

How do you stay fresh in your approach in, in an ecosystem that has become very, very crowded? How do you, how do you find maybe new ways of, of looking at what you're doing or do you.

[00:19:31] Rachel: I don't know if we necessarily do, to be quite honest. I think what a, a lot of, you know, our topics for our podcast or where we go with the podcast are centered on the challenges that we have in education as educators ourselves. So, you know, we've we started out with a lot of podcast topics about ed tech tools, because that was where.

Our strengths were, but now we've kind of, you know, gone to other topics like mastery based learning because that's something both Katie and I have become really passionate about over the past couple years and, and looking at universal design for learning and, and different sort of UN grading kinds of strategies.

And so a lot of, a lot of where we go with the podcast really does come from our own. Personal experience. And like Katie said earlier, right. It gives us a way to problem solve and talk out different challenges that we're facing in our classrooms.

[00:20:33] Stephen: So, so universal design for learning. We, we hear a lot about the science of reading. Now there's lots to talk about in, in education, in public education, Katie, what where's your, where's your I'm gonna use the phrase growing edge. Uh, What are some of the issues, topics places that. See your, you and Rachel growing into in 2022 and 23.

[00:20:56] Katie: I think we're going to be doing a lot more on UN grading. And because we're both implementing mastery based this fall, there's gonna be a lot of failures being shared and a lot of what are our next steps and how are we gonna fix this and get better and, and, and problem solving through some of those challenges.

And then from there, I think, you know, we are. There's a lot going on in education right now. Good, bad and ugly. And I think that that will come through as well over this next year.

[00:21:23] Doug: One of the things that intrigues me about your work is that not only do you do the podcast, but very often you have a supporting blog post that goes along with it. And I know you had originally backed away from blogs because you didn't think you would sit down and write, but I think you're hitting us with two different forms of media that really makes it.

Incredibly rich to the point where there's not, I don't, I'd be hard pressed to find somebody that follows what it is that you're doing. And what you're doing is so unique that blog post that goes along with the podcast is so rich. How does that come together? And, and does that slow down the publishing process?

[00:22:02] Katie: That's really funny. I, I do the blog posts every week. Um, And so it's, I actually love it because I'm the type of person and this is why we started it. I can't just learn from listening. I need something to go back to, to look at and to read through and to remind myself that's just the type of learner I am.

And so when we started doing it, we said, you know, it's great to have a podcast, but it would be nice to have notes to go along with it, so that those who wanna reference them and actually check out some of the links that we have cetera, it, it becomes this extra resource that is out there in case you don't have the time to sit and listen.

Does it slow down publishing? It takes hours to kind of put those together. And so that's usually my Monday night from the evening after dinner until whatever time I finish at that's my Monday night where I'm going through and hyperlinking everything and typing out our notes. But I do love it. I, I do think it's great.

And I think that we talk things out when we're problem solving. And so then to listen back and type out the notes and put it all together in text form it, it works really well.

[00:23:04] Doug:

I think that really makes you unique in this space.

[00:23:07] Rachel: Yeah, we have a really nice sort of division of labor in terms of the podcast and the notes. So I'm the one who does all the podcast editing. So I take all the audio, I edit it down and, and create the uh, podcast episode, get that uploaded. And I try and do that super early so that when Katie goes to do her notes, and I know she does 'em last minute and it used to stress me out so much.

I've learned to just, you know, take a breath and, and not worry about it now, but having that podcast episode there then, and ready for her to do her notes at the last minute, you know, that gives her something to listen to as she's putting those together. So, you know, we both spend probably a few hours every week on this podcast, but it really is a passion project and it's something we love doing.

And it's, so it's worth our time putting, you know, that energy into it.

[00:24:03] Stephen: I'm sure both of you get asked and will continue to get asked by classroom teachers, by people, in organizations to provide some advice and some support on for people who want to start into podcasting. Rachel, I'm wondering when you receive requests like that, and as you plan those support sessions out, Where do you start?

Do you start with the technology? Do you start with the ideas? Do you start with somewhere in between? How do you, how do you approach sharing your knowledge of, of podcasting?

[00:24:35] Rachel: I'm trying to think. So a lot of the requests we get are not actually for people wanting to start podcasts, but wanting to start podcasting in their classroom.

So a few of the sessions that we've run together as EduGals are really centered around doing micro podcasts in the classroom and getting started with that.

And so like a lot of our messaging around podcasting is you don't need fancy equipment. Really. You just need something to record your audio and a device, you know, that you're recording on it and then. You need to obviously have some topics and some ideas about where you're going, but really it's honestly, to like get started in podcasting.

You, you really just have to hit record and learn as you go.

[00:25:19] Stephen: Katie, is that the name of your upcoming book? Just hit record.

[00:25:22] Katie: I feel like it should be that's exactly. Kind of our mentality is it doesn't matter what you use. Doesn't matter. Anything, just hit the button, get going, just start talking.

[00:25:32] Doug: And where do you, so you've hit 100, which is a, a huge milestone. And congratulations to that. What do you've got lined up for the next 100?

[00:25:41] Katie: Well, I think that if we were to only have an extra 100 at the very end of that would be Google Sheets. Because we keep saying we're going to do an episode and never do because Google sheets drives us crazy. But good question. I, I think that we're just, we take it as it goes. We have about, I think what, 10 to 12, that we have topics for that we're going out and doing a little bit of research on and, and gathering information, but UN grading mastery.

UDL, those, those are kind of where we're headed with multi episode parts. because we have lots to share.

[00:26:15] Doug: Do you take requests? 

[00:26:16] Katie: Always. Do you have a request?

[00:26:19] Doug: I've actually got a couple of ideas that I was thinking about. That would just be so cool. I'll I'll have to ship them to you under separate,

[00:26:25] Katie: definitely. 

[00:26:26] Doug: rather than doing it live here.

[00:26:27] Stephen: Well, this is, this has been great to get to know you more and to find out about your journey to this point. Doug, we need to we need to keep in touch with with Rachel and Katie as we continue our journey.

[00:26:37] Doug: absolutely every time there's a blog post that's up there. It pops up here in my reader and I, I do, I am a faithful reader of it. I will admit to that.

[00:26:46] Katie: Well, thank you so much to Doug and Stephen for joining us today and sharing our hundredth episode with us. It's been such a fun journey and we've enjoyed having you along that journey of podcasting.

[00:26:57] Doug: It's an Honor to have been asked.

[00:26:59] Stephen: Absolutely.

[00:26:59] Rachel: Yes. Thank thank you so much for joining us. It's uh, like Katie said, it's been an amazing journey. I couldn't ask for a better co-host so it it's, it's been awesome.

[00:27:11] Rachel: So, what we'll do is we'll include any of the links or resources we talked about here today. I'm not sure how many resources we really talked about, but if we have anything, we'll put them in our show notes and you can access our show notes for this episode at slash 100 that's E D U G A L S .com/ 100.

[00:27:33] Katie: And if you like what you heard, then feel free to share it with a colleague or a friend. And don't forget to subscribe on your favorite podcast app so that you don't miss out on any future content.

[00:27:42] Rachel: And as always, we'd love to hear from you. So if you have any comments or suggestions for us, you can go onto our flip EDU And leave us a video message there. Or you can go onto our website and leave us a written comment at

[00:28:00] Katie: Thanks for listening and see you next week.