Using audio in the k-12 classroom

by: Zoe Branigan-Pipe


How does the use of audio, visual, and video increase learning, teaching, and leadership opportunities in learning environments?


How can audio address the needs of students and teachers?; How will audio tools promote and support instructional leadership for school leaders? Will pen/paper digital applications provide more opportunities for educators to distribute teaching and learning?; How can students use text/audio to share their work?; How does interactive audio/text instruction address scaffolding needs of students? How does the use of audio allow in combination or in isolation help create a more equitable learning environment?

Demonstrate, Discuss and Do

This "Minds On" will support multi-literacy theories of learning, specifically focusing on the combination of audio and text in both traditional pen to paper applications as well as e-learning environments. This center will demonstrate how to add interactive audio or video to text or image and to make it accessible in a multitude of formats (on paper, on computer, using a handheld device).


With a continued focus in Educational Leadership, my learning has revolved around ed-tech leadership frameworks. This study is a true culmination of my previous Graduate courses in which I’ve researched and discussed the use of 21st century educational pedagogies and methods. I have focused strongly on the use of multiliteracies and collaborative tools in which distribute leadership and learning, and allow for on-going a learning and sharing. In particular, I have (and continue to) facilitated a collaborative blog ( with several other educational leaders that focuses specifically on the use of audio in the learning environments.

In the 21st Century, we are beginning to see more and more learning and social tools that are using audio forms. Audio tools like the Livescribe pen (which captures the audio and text together) and most handheld devices (cell phones, ipods) can provide a comfortable and meaningful way for educators at all levels to increase efficiency in their daily routines, increase communication with students (and parents), provide more support for students and more accurate and meaningful assessments. Since audio tools can be used with pen and paper (Livescribe) as well as with a computer or other portable device, the fear factor/intimidation of technology use for new users would be decreased, therefore allowing teachers and student to comfortably adopt audio as a literacy within their learning environments. Further, both teachers and students will benefit form the flexibility that this tool provides since they can document their lessons and information laterally and in a variety of formats (hand drawn notes, images, audio notes).