Your mission is, in self-selected groups of three to four students, to create a 30-minute radio show in the style of “This American Life.” “This American Life”airs Saturdays on National Public Radio, or on a podcast near you. Each week, the staff at “This American Life” picks a theme and runs two to five stories—filling an hour of airtime—exploring the theme from different angles. The stories can take the form of interviews, essays, reports, etc. Examples of past student work on this project can be found on the class Sharepoint site or on the Soylentgreene podcast on iTunes.
Do not fabricate, lie, use funny voices just for the sake of using funny voices (I call this one the Boudreau-Savoia rule) or do the really stupid thing where you wait until the last week to work on this. Limited class time will be allotted for this project. Technical help and equipment will be allotted on a first-come, first-served basis.
You will be graded on story quality, writing, the length requirement, clarity, production quality and interest. You will receive a group grade on this puppy—you all fly or fall together. The show should be geared toward your audience: young adults and teachers. There can be one (1) opinion piece per show, Joe. The show should have a musical intro (15 seconds) and outro (30 seconds). Music (10 seconds) also can be used to transition between stories. Forbidden as topics are (because they've been done so many times): teen drinking/drugs/partying/sex, dating, DOGS, Senioritis, experiences with the paranormal, bucket list and most embarrassing moments.
Over the next couple of days, you should complete the first stage in this assignment. You should also listen to at least two complete episodes of "This American Life" with an ear toward format, content and execution. I'll be checking in to make sure this happens.