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Immigration Interview Podcast

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Keywords: Immigration, Podcast, Interview
Subject(s): Geography, Social Studies, History
Grades 10 through 11
School: North Eugene High School, Eugene, OR
Planned By: Eric Suchman
Original Author: Eric Suchman, Eugene
These are the expectations I give my students for this project:

Immigration Oral History Project Expectations

What is an Oral History?
Oral histories are created when one person (the interviewer) interviews another person (the interviewee) about a specific time period in the interviewee’s life or a specific topic they can recall. The interviewer takes the interviewee’s responses and creates a text of the interviewee’s words told through the point of view of the interviewee. This is not an exact transcript of what the interviewee says. The interviewer must edit the transcript—moving parts around, taking parts out, and even adding words here and there (with the interviewee’s permission). The final piece of writing should capture the voice and spirit of the interviewee.

Requirements for Immigration Oral History
• The person should be first generation immigrant (they moved to the U.S. from another country) or a migrant from another part of the U.S.
• All interviewees must be approved by Suchman or Madden
• You, not the interviewee, record their answers

• Prior to recording of podcast, a completed script must be turned in
• Script must include:
- background information on the interviewee
- historical context for the interviewee’s migration
- information connecting the interviewee’s experiences to historical immigration trends
- a transcript of the interviewee’s responses

• Your podcast should include a narration providing the information included in the script
• Podcasts should include interviewee’s responses in the voice of either the interviewee or a student reading the responses word-for-word
• Podcast should use Garageband, Audacity, or a different audio program

Steps to Completing the Oral History
• Select a person you wish to interview.
• Obtain their permission.
• Set up an interview time and location; set aside an hour or so.
• Do some research on the country of their origin.
• Create questions to guide your interview.
• If possible, record the interview; take notes on interviewee’s mannerisms, etc.
• Transcribe the interview into Q/A format, word for word.
• Edit the Q/A into the final oral history including background and historical context
• Turn the script into a 3-6 minute podcast
• Write a thank you letter to the interviewee!

These recorders will be loaned out to students to conduct their interviews and record their own voice narrations.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
This unit is combined with a literature unit (in a language arts class) in which short fiction and poetry relating to immigration is read and analyzed.
These podcasts will be submitted to the local public radio station with the hope that the best ones will be selected to be aired on the radio.
Materials: Digital Voice Recorders
Other Items: 20 Digital Voice Recorders, $79.99 each, total of $1599.80