Audioboo enables you to create, store and store and share audio digital files across multiple devices. The free app gives you 3 minutes of recording time, and there appears to be a limitless number of Boos you can make. Audioboo Plus paid App costs £60.
The sound quality is excellent, the instruction panel is not text dense and there is a pause and resume button, is a feature which many recording apps do not have. Boos can be tagged for easy retrieval. Tags are keywords or terms which allow words to be repeatedly located through ta searches. For example, students could pull up all Boos associated with describing people, telling stories about journeys or holidays etc. Tagging is a digital literacy skill all students should acquire as tags in order to manage disparate pieces of work. Boos can also be given titles and signature photographs for easy recognition when searching archives.
In an EFL environment teacher or student created Boos can be used as models for others to emulate or for level appropriate listening practice. Students were able to write in Pages, keep it open, press the record button in Audioboo and scroll back a screen to their Pages text, to read it out, or use the key words highlighted there as to scaffold their speaking. Knowing that their end products would be available for others to listen to, encouraged our EFL learners to raise the bar. Many students recorded and re-recorded their descriptions before sharing them with the class via a direct email option. Peers listened to each other’s Boos and wrote comments. After feedback from students, they improved their recordings, before they are entered into their digital speaking portfolio on iBooks.
As the Audioboos produced by others can be searched for and listened to either under the Chanel Tab or on the website, Audioboo is also a great source of authentic listening materials. Channels Boos include recordings by the BBC, The Redbull’s Formula 1 Team, Manchester United Fan Club etc. Although many of these recordings are of CEFRL C1 or C2 level, they can be used with lower level learners if the task to be achieved is within their reach. For example, commentary by the BBC may require students to simply list the countries mentioned, that from the Manchester United Boos could require students to write down the number of goals scored and who scored them.
Finally, it is obvious that Boo Head Quarters are spending a lot of time developing this App and its support website. There are some interesting mini articles on how Audioboo is being used in education. It is certainly an App and a website that it work checking out.
Please also see the Lesson Plan Section of this blog, where you can find a lesson plan focusing on teacher made Boos.