This past Thursday, thanks to an email heads-up from Tammy Parks, I watched high school journalism students in Howe, Oklahoma broadcast their weekly news show LIVE on the web: CLE-Live! I snapped a few photos of the broadcast with my iPhone as I watched from Oklahoma City.

Watching CLE-Live! on Friday, December 19, 2008

I wrote about Howe students and teachers back in February 2008 in the post, “Oklahoma Students: Modeling Digital Education and 1 to 1 Learning.” The journalism teacher at Howe High School and the lead adult catalyst behind CLE-Live! is Tammy, who was our keynote speaker in November at the fall 2008 Oklahoma Distance Learning Association conference. Her keynote, “Humanizing the Learning Technology,” provided a great window into the ways Howe students are utilizing technology to build bridges to other communities and cultures, as well as share their own local history with the world via student-created virtual field trips.

Students at Howe are broadcasting live on the web via their Tandberg Content Server (TCS), which archives as well as live-broadcasts H.323 videoconference events and transcodes them after the fact into various target formats. The CLE Live! December 18th production is available as a link from Tammy’s website, and plays directly from the Howe TCS. The actual broadcast begins at the 2 min 23 second mark of the video, so if you watch it be patient or forward the playhead to see the start of the show.

The elementary version of CLE Live! from last week (on Friday) is available as a flash video on SchoolTube. This was also recorded by the TCS (and starts at the 57 second mark of the video) but is embeddable since the TCS-recorded video was uploaded to SchoolTube.

The lip-sync to Alvin and the Chipmunks in this CLE Live! episode is very clever! While I think the TCS functionality is great, I wish it supported direct transcoding to Flash as UStream does, to not only facilitate cross-platform and multiple-browser functionality but also to permit easy embedding. Perhaps that is a new feature Tandberg will add to the TCS at some point.

Kudos to Howe students and teachers for producing such an exemplary series of weekly news broadcasts, and even sharing them live over the web! My only regret during the live broadcast on Thursday was that I wasn’t able to call in and vote for the survey question, “How do you say Merry Christmas in Hawaiian?” The news anchors just shared their phone extension for internal calls at Howe school. Had I known their phone number with area code, I was ready to dial in since I’d just looked up the answer via Google. 🙂

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