Northglenn High School’s STEM program is looking for 14 volunteers from the community who have a knack for storytelling and the time to listen to a group of 10th graders’ tales.
STEM Coordinator Leslie Foster said the volunteers will come into the school to help judge podcasts created by a group of students, part of an annual program that looks at the roots of story telling.
“Essentially, they are looking at the identity of everyday life and what makes us Northglenners and what makes us a community,” Foster said. “They are looking at the stories that are beautiful but really just everyday life.”
The students will be submitting their finished podcasts to the National Public Radio Podcast challenge, a national competition. Foster said it’s the second year the 10th grade class has submitted their work to the contest.
English Teacher Lindsay Brown said she still recalls an entry from last year. One student, a recent immigrant, interviewed his mother about the family’s experiences moving to Northglenn from Mexico.
“It touched on all the fears and things that she went through,” Brown said. “He interviewed her in Spanish, and then translated it for me in writing.”
The students work in teams, helping to write, produce, read, record and edit the final product. Each podcast ends up being about five to 10 minutes. In all, 100 kids in two classes will create about 30 podcasts.
“Another student interviewed a friend about bullying,” Brown said. “She felt all her teachers thought she was just lazy and didn’t care about school. In reality, the kids in the class were saying mean things and she didn’t want to go to class.”
Brown said three classes began working on their podcasts mid-March, finalizing their own ideas last week. They’ll begin writing and recording them during the final week of the month.
The volunteer panelists will work in two groups on April 12, a morning session from 8:15-10:15 a.m. and an afternoon session from 1-2 p.m.
Brown said the student’s work will be presented cafe style, with each of the student teams at tables around the room.
“The panelists can walk around the room and go to the ones that look interesting,” Brown said. “The kids can talk about their podcasts. And then the panelists get to listen to the podcast and ask questions afterward.”
Panelists will give students feedback on their podcasts in order to improve their storytelling.
Once they are submitted to the NPR contest, Brown said the podcasts will be posted to the Northglenn High School website — pending permission from their parents.
Northglenn High School is looking for 14 community volunteers April 12 to help evaluate student podcasts. To volunteer, email STEM Coordinator Leslie Foster at email@example.com