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Now that the Listening Olympics have come to a close we want to congratulate our winners! In the Olympic spirit, we have awarded Gold, Silver and Bronze prizes to contest participants based on the top quiz scores and highest student participation!


  • Gold Medal Winner: Brianne Underwood at Woodlake Valley Middle School with the best overall student performance, a student average of 86%! She will win 1 pair of Bose headphones and classroom set of headphones/earbuds.


  • Silver Medal Winner: Katherine Edwards at Lake Oconee Academy – who had the most student quiz submissions of 100 student submissions! Her class wins a classroom set of headphones!


  • Bronze Medal Winner: Awarded to an engaged #listeningolympic user, Theresa Garcia at Washingtonville Middle School! She wins a Listenwise bag and t-shirt!


Thank you all for participating and congrats to our winners!


If you want to learn more about the Listening Olympics read all the contest details here.

(Originally published on March 19, 2017 and updated March 8, 2018)

March is Women’s History Month. Do you know the history of Women’s History Month? In 1980, a consortium of women’s groups and historians, led by the National Women’s History Project, successfully lobbied for national recognition. In February 1980, President Jimmy Carter issued the first Presidential Proclamation declaring the Week of March 8th, 1980 as National Women’s History Week.

Use these Listenwise audio stories this month to help students learn about the accomplishments of amazing women of all ages, cultures, races, and abilities. Expand your students’ knowledge of the contributions of women around the world.

Browse the many additional women’s stories in Listenwise  in our Women’s History Collection.



               Harriet Beecher Stowe


               A Letter from Phillis Wheatley


               Black Women Math Heroes at NASA


            Origins and Relevance of the ‘Feminine Mystique’


              Themes of Belonging: Sandra Cisneros


            Joan of Arc’s Influence Still Shines Today


               First African Woman To Win Peace Prize


Current Events

         Female Hockey Players Fight for Fair Wages

         First Female Boston Marathon Runner

            More Women Say # MeToo

            Nellie Bly and Her Journalism Career

           Amelia Earhart’s Flight

          Sandra Day O’Connor on the Supreme Court

        Madeleine Albright

            The First Female Computer Programmer

             Women on the Money

            First Female Nominee for President

           Debate: Is Wonder Woman a Good Ambassador for Women’s Issues?



Other Resources/Lessons

Share My Lesson collection

Teaching Tolerance Resources

Facing History Resources

Find Feminist books and resources at Click! 

Ed History blog resources






Teaching kindness can create inclusive school environments and positive behavior that invites friendship. Promoting kindness is also a key in reducing its opposite: bullying. As students become more aware of their emotions, they can better empathize with others and respond with kindness. Teaching social and emotional skills, such as empathy, is increasing in many schools and may change the role of learning in the future.

Stories of Friendship and Empathy

Students can create change and impact other students by being open to understanding each other and creating friendships. Teaching the Novel Wonder is a good place to start when teaching about bullying and empathy. Listen to an interview with the author of Wonder, R.J. Palacio, and hear about how she describes the relationship between kindness and courage, and then use some of the audio and lesson resources for teaching Wonder.


There are many LIstenwise audio stories that can help provide examples of kindness and empathy to students.



The Different Stages of a Bully and the Bullied


Put your students in the shoes of a bully and the bullied. Listen to these stories to help give students new perspectives.


What does a bully sound like? Listen to this Listenwise story about a former bully who discusses his aggressive, fearless behavior which led to time in juvenile detention, and what he thinks about his future.


In another point of view, this Listenwise lesson looks into the psychology of a bully and why we should use empathy when considering the bully and the bullied.


What happens after bullying occurs? This Listenwise audio tells the story of a teen who had an unexpected response to bullying; she used social media to relay her experience in an attempt to get people to fight against bullying, and it worked!


Lastly, this Listenwise audio shares the experience of a 55-year-old man who was aggressively bullied many years earlier. Listen to hear how he survived the verbal and physical abuse and hear his reflection on the impact bullying has had on his life.


Facing History has teaching guides for schools who want a whole grade or school to read the book Wonder, as well as many resources to help teach students about bullying. PBS Newshour also has lessons and activities to help discuss friendship and bullying with students. If you’d like to understand more about the process of bullying and to dive into real examples of scenarios on decisions teenagers have to make every day, take a look at these dilemmas and how to navigate a discussion with your students.

We are very excited to introduce the Listenwise Advocate Program! The program features a select group of educators who are enthusiastic experts in using Listenwise PREMIUM in their classrooms. The Listenwise Advocates will motivate the Listenwise community to further integrate Listenwise audio content into their teaching and improve students’ listening comprehension. We’d like to introduce our first group of Advocates and we will be choosing another group of Advocates in April!

Learn more about this program and apply before April.


Meet the Listenwise Advocates

Listenwise Advocates believe in harnessing the power of podcasts, public radio, and listening resources to enhance student learning. These awesome educators are master teachers and we have had the honor of presenting with them in past conferences, workshops, and webinars. Andrew Garnett-Cook presented with us at NCSS 2016, Mike Messner presented with us at NCSS 2017 this past December, and Mike Godsey presented with us at SXSWedu 2017 in March. If you are headed to CCSS this March, be sure to check out Scott Petri’s talk.

Find most of our advocates in past webinars, and stay tuned for an April webinar series! Meet the Advocates!


Katie Booth

Katie is a middle school teacher in California who teaches across all content areas. She holds a Master’s Degree in STEAM education. She has been teaching for 6 years after making a career change from the business world. 


Sebastian Byers

Sebastian teaches high school science in North Carolina. Interested in teaching students about climate change? Read Bringing Climate Change into the Classroom, Sebastian’s’ blog that was recently published by PBS Education! Follow him on Twitter @scienceteachme


Jim Bentley

Jim is a 5th and 6th grade teacher in Elk Grove, California. Check out Envisioning Lessons with Multimedia Text Sets, Jim’s Listenwise webinar about how building multimedia text sets with Listenwise and other resources can both deepen and broaden student learning. Follow Jim on Twitter @Curiosity_Films


Scott Petri

Scott teaches high school history in California. Scott is active on Twitter, where he regularly posts about the latest developments in and discussions about education! Follow him @Scottmpetri



Erik Eve

Erik teaches 8th grade social studies in Lindenhurst, NY. Follow Erik on Twitter for lots of great history content! @mrevelindy



Andrew Garnett-Cook

Andrew teaches Ancient Mediterranean Civilizations and U.S. History in Brookline, MA. Looking for an interesting resource about history and public radio? We recommend watching Bringing History to Life with Public Radio, the webinar in which Andrew and Listenwise CEO Monica Brady-Myerov explore new ways to teach history within the context of current events.


Mike Messner

Mike is a high school social studies teacher in Los Altos, California who recently started his blog, Moments with Mike. You can follow him on Twitter @teachermike72



Michael Godsey

Mike is an ELA teacher in San Luis Obispo, California, as well as an active writer and creator of ELA resources. Curious about making podcasts with students? Check out Michael’s Listenwise webinar, Creating Podcasts in Class, to learn about how to teach your students to be podcast writers, recorders, and producers. Follow Michael on Twitter @TheMrGodsey

Rosemary Miketa

Rosemary is an ESL professor at Henry Ford College English Language Institute in Michigan. She has taught English abroad in Australia, the UK, and Spain!



To learn more about the Teacher Advocate Program and how you can apply, check out our Listenwise Teacher Advocate Program page!

Img source: https://www.scholastic.com/teachers/collections/teaching-content/presidents-day-classroom/

Monday February 19, 2018 is President’s Day when we celebrate George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, the two U.S. Presidents who were born in February. Use these resources to teach your students about the constitutional legacy of George Washington and how our nation was transformed by Abraham Lincoln’s fight for liberty.


Listenwise President’s Day Audio

Here are Listenwise stories that you can assign and discuss, or listen to together with your students. Have students discuss how George Washington set the standard for the role of president in the story, George Washington: His Finest Act. Discuss the American Revolution with this story, and the Origins of July 4th with these stories. Listen to a story about the Gettysburg Address, and revisit the night Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.


Other Resources for President’s Day

We the People: The Citizen & the Constitution

Use these lessons to engage students in learning about these presidents and how they shaped history.


Presidents’ Day: A Life Lesson for Students

This lesson has students think about what they would do if they were President of the U.S. and guides thinking and discussion of issues they care about and would fight to promote.


Lincoln’s Crossroads

This interactive animated game prompts students to decide on issues and get advice and then see how their choices aligned to Lincoln’s actions.


Branches of Power Game

This game from iCivics allows students to make choices about laws and control all three branches of government.


President’s Day Videos

These videos from History.com help students learn more about the presidents.


The First President

Listen to this NPR discussion of George Washington and why it was said upon his death, “First in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen.”


Listenwise Audio on U.S. Government and Civics


While you cheer on your favorite athletes in Pyeongchang, you can take part in our Listenwise Listening Olympics!

To participate, have your students listen to our Current Event stories every day of the Olympics- between February 12th and February 23rd. Our competition will be in the form of a Listening Olympics quiz at the end of the two weeks. The questions will be based on the news stories heard on Listenwise over the two weeks of the Olympics.

Assign the quiz to your students and you could win Bose headphones!!

Be sure to play the Listening Olympics opening ceremony audio story with your class to get them excited about participating and learn more about the competition.

Students can take the listening news quiz from Friday, February 23rd through March 2nd.

The more you and your students listen, the better the chance you have of winning! In the Olympic spirit, we will award Gold, Silver, and Bronze medals based on the top quiz scores and highest student participation! Did we mention you could win Bose headphones, a set of classroom headphones and Listenwise swag?!

Get those ears ready for some listening.


Who can participate? Everyone using Listenwise Premium. All grades are welcome.

**Be sure to have your 30-day trial of Premium— if you are a free user and want to partake in the contest, click “Start 30-Day Free Trial” on your dashboard.




How to participate:

  • When to listen: Listen to the upcoming current events Monday February 12 – Friday February 23. You don’t have to listen on the day the new current event is posted – you can go back and listen to the stories at the end of the two weeks.
  • When to take the quiz: The quiz will be released on Friday February 23 and you will have until Friday March 2 to have your class submit answers.
  • Contest ends: 11:59 pm EST on March 2 – all quizzes need to be submitted by midnight on March 2.


How to officially enter the contest: No Need to Sign up!

Students submissions of the Listening Olympics quiz in Listenwise will be your contest entries. Simply assign this quiz to students in your existing classes. If you need help getting started, check out our Teacher Support Center to find out how to add students to Listenwise. Then assign the Listenwise Olympics quiz to your students anytime from February 23 through March 2.

We only accept one quiz per student account – no retests. Quizzes must be submitted by March 2 to be entered to win.


How to win: Winners will be determined by student quiz performance in Listenwise and student participation. Be on the lookout for fun social media prizes for participation.


What you can win:

In the Olympic spirit, we will award Gold, Silver and Bronze prizes to contest participants based on the top quiz scores and highest student participation!

    • Gold Medal: Awarded to the classroom with the best overall student performance → 1 pair of Bose headphones and classroom set of headphones/earbuds
    • Silver Medal: Awarded to the classroom with the most student quiz submissions  → Classroom set of headphones/earbuds
    • Bronze Medal: Awarded to engaged social users tweeting pictures of them partaking in the #listeningolympics → Prizes include Listenwise bag and t-shirt


Be sure to follow us on twitter @listenwiselearn, tweet using the #listeningolympics hashtag and be on the lookout for opportunities to win Listenwise swag.

We are thrilled to announce our new partnership with NPR’s Planet Money! Planet Money is an award-winning NPR podcast that explains aspects of the economy with interesting, relevant stories that captivate audiences across the country–and now you can access that great content on Listenwise!


Through this partnership we are offering economics stories and lessons aimed at high school students. Topics include the stock market, inflation, government spending, the Federal Reserve and much more. These stories are a great way to inform students about important economic systems, institutions, and issues facing the United States.


Here are some Planet Money stories currently available on Listenwise:


We currently have 12 economics stories on our website and you can find the stories by searching “Planet Money” in the search bar on the top right of our website. Be on the lookout for more upcoming lessons!


Happy Listening!

(Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

The 2018 Winter Olympics are coming up! Are you as excited as we are?!


The Winter Olympic Games are a time to watch the best of the best athletes excel in their sport. They are held every four years, and include events such as the biathlon, bobsled and skeleton, curling, figure skating, hockey, luge, ski and snowboard, and speedskating.


Get your students engaged in real world events they enjoy and bring the 2018 PyeongChang Games into your classroom. Below are some ideas and resources to help you do so.


Do you know why the Olympics started and how they have evolved to modern day? Watch this PBS Learning Media video.


Here are some Listenwise stories about the Sochi winter Olympics to listen to with your class. Keep an eye out for more upcoming current events on Listenwise.


These are resources from other sources that you can use while teaching the Winter Olympics.


Explore other NPR stories and answer these questions.


The Olympic Charter states: ‘No kind of demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda is permitted in the Olympic areas.’ However, the history of the Olympics have included protests and boycotts.


Connect the Olympics with the political climates of different regions and time periods.

Did you know that the Berlin Olympics were the first to be televised…sort of? Connect your current Olympic discussions to past Olympic history: Nazis Pioneered Broadcasting… And Made Jesse Owens A Star

Why We Commemorate MLK Day

Embracing Dr. King’s philosophy and strategy of nonviolence to eliminate poverty, racism and violence, The King Center is dedicated to Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy.

We encourage you to read the full eloquent article written by Coretta Scott King, to get a full picture of why we take a day to celebrate and honor Martin Luther King Jr. Read this excerpt below.

“The Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday celebrates the life and legacy of a man who brought hope and healing to America. We commemorate as well the timeless values he taught us through his example — the values of courage, truth, justice, compassion, dignity, humility and service that so radiantly defined Dr. King’s character and empowered his leadership.

The King Holiday honors the life and contributions of America’s greatest champion of racial justice and equality, the leader who not only dreamed of a color-blind society, but who also lead a movement that achieved historic reforms to help make it a reality. On this day we commemorate Dr. King’s great dream of a vibrant, multiracial nation united in justice, peace and reconciliation; a nation that has a place at the table for children of every race and room at the inn for every needy child. We are called on this holiday, not merely to honor, but to celebrate the values of equality, tolerance and interracial sister and brotherhood he so compellingly expressed in his great dream for America…”

Teaching Tolerance also says it well, “Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday is an opportunity to tell a nuanced story about a complicated man and movement.” As educators this is an opportunity to delve into teaching about related current events and the past, tied to civil rights movements, race relations, and equity.


Listenwise Resources for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Use our large collection of public radio stories to supplement your Martin Luther King Day lessons and dive into the achievements and beliefs of Martin Luther King, Jr. while learning more about the civil rights movement. Listen to these great stories and ask your students these questions:

Using public radio stories, with first person audio is a great way to bring conversations about past protests into current experiences. Use these stories to compare protests now with those in the past, discuss what are effective protests when faced with oppression, and compare Black Lives Matter to the Civil Rights movement. Protests in the 1960s included lunch counter protests, Little Rock Nine, and Selma.

Civil Rights protests now include the protests of police taking Freddie Gray’s life, Michael Brown’s life, Alton Sterling’s life, Philando Castile’s life, Tamir Rice’s life and Anthony Lamar Smith’s life. Other protests of racial injustice include protests of Charlottesville, student protests at Universities, and the NFL protest, Take a Knee.


Martin Luther King Jr. Day Resources from Other Organizations

Teaching Tolerance has many resources for MLK day including the do’s and don’ts of celebrating MLK day and From MLK to #BlackLivesMatter: A Throughline for Young Students.

Explore this Edutopia collection of lesson plans, curricula, and multimedia resources for teaching the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Check out the #sojustedu conversation on twitter to find more resources and join this conversation further.

Learn more about Martin Luther King’s radical vision by the Zinn Education project.

Lessons, resources, and workshops about the modern African American Freedom Struggle and King’s vision of a just and peaceful world can be found in this curriculum by Stanford University.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is also a great time to reflect on how you are incorporating his beliefs into your everyday teaching. Caitrin Blake wrote a great article on social justice education, and how to teach the the principles of social justice focusing on building a society in which everyone has equal access to resources and receives equitable treatment regardless of their race, gender, religion, sexuality, income level or disability. This Edutopia article by Dr. Tabitha Dell’Angelo highlights a few of the ways you can bring social justice teaching into your classroom, through the importance of teaching issues that connect to your students lives.

We’ve published many new stories recently. Choose a topic and share these stories with your students!


Education Around the World


Access to education varies all around the world, and especially for women and girls. Listen to this story to hear how school for girls in Kabul has become more accessible, but is still not where it should be. Listen to this interview with the author of the book, The Kids of Kabul and learn more about the challenges faced by Afghan children and women, especially in the area of education. Education for girls is lacking in other places as well. Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager who was shot by the Taliban, showed the world just how difficult it is to receive an education as a female in Pakistan. Listen to an audio story about girls who are fighting for their rights to an education in Pakistan despite dangerous obstacles and a lack of support and finances. This current event lets you hear from two women attending University now that ISIS occupation ended in Mosul, Iraq, as they describe their goals.


An Author’s Life


Do you ever wonder what an author’s life was like outside of their writing? Listen to this story of Samuel Clemens who went under the pen name, Mark Twain, and lived a much more tragic life that Twain’s stories suggest. Another author, Richard Wright, did the opposite and wrote stories, such as Native Son, based on his real-life experiences. Listen to hear from Wright’s daughter discussing her father’s work and how it compares with his real life and her life. Author Orson Welles once staged a radio play that managed to make people believe the world was ending by an alien invasion. Listen to hear how fictional writing has the potential to cause real-life panic. An author’s writing can also shed light on things happening in society. Listen to hear about how Harriet Beecher Stowe‘s anger towards the way people were treated in the 1800s made its way into her famous story, Uncle Tom’s Cabin. For JD Salinger, fame was something he never wanted. However, this story shares how The Catcher in the Rye made Salinger too well known for his liking.


How Stories Still Have An Impact Today

Some stories never lose their popularity as they continue to have an impact on next generations. In “Death of a Salesman”, the character of Willy Loman is still powerful and resonates today. Listen to this story about how Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” was performed in countries around the world over a two year period. The Blind Side, a more recent story, has educated readers on how the offensive left tackle is a crucial part of any American football game, and how the power of kindness can be transformational.


Foods Both Modern and Ancient


Students are planting, growing, and eating food that they make in the backyard of their schools. Listen to learn how easy it is to start growing food like popcorn and why students, and parents, love it. Speaking of popcorn, listen to this story about the history of popcorn and the how it was a snack for the Aztecs long before it became a movie theater favorite.



Did you know Leonardo da Vinci used the scientific method long before historians thought it was discovered? Listen to this story to learn how da Vinci was more than a painter and sculptor. Another recent scientific discovery answers the question of how cats always land on their feet. Listen to this story to find out how cats seem to defy the laws of physics. An engineer who worked on the Challenger space shuttle that exploded 30 years ago, tells about his experience. He emphasizes how essential scientific proof is to make sure a rocket would be safe for take off.


US Government: Amendments

The 13th Amendment was thought to abolish slavery. However, this story hears from the director of a documentary film who explains how mass incarceration is an extension of slavery. The 1st Amendment separates government from religious institutions and the preference for one faith over another. Listen to this 1st Amendment story about the current tax-exempt status of churches, evidence of how our founders dealt with the issue, and the legal challenges of banning immigrants from certain countries.