The new year is the perfect time to refresh your Spotify playlist or simply expand your digital content library. From climate change activism to supporting youth mental health, the Digital Futures Institute (DFI) and Teachers College community offer a variety of podcasts to help jumpstart your 2023 lineup! Follow along as we unpack just a few of our favorites:

1. How’s School?

Episode 3: Supporting Youth Mental Health

“How’s School?" is DFI’s newest podcast, which focuses primarily on the critical issues and questions that impact young people, spanning the areas of health, education, and psychology. In Episode 3, hosts Jen Lee and Joe Riina-Ferrie sit down with Assistant Professor of Counseling Psychology Cindy Y. Huang to discuss the mental health crisis that is ever so prevalent amongst today’s youth. Huang shares her insight and research, which shows that while the impact of worsening mental health and the pandemic is felt across youth identity categories, some youth are facing even higher risks based on things like their identity or immigration status. Listen now!

2. MASCLab (Media and Social Change Lab) Podcast

Season 4, Episode 3: Multimodal Research and Gen Z Online Identities

Our next pick comes from the Media and Social Change Lab podcast, which was created to serve as a deep-dive platform for all things related to media in research, scholarship, and social change. In season four, MASCLab members Xiaoyi Gabby Zhou, Joe Riina-Ferrie, and Lívia Barros Cruz chat with Catherine Cheng Stahl, a Doctoral Fellow in TC’s Department of Curriculum and Teaching. Stahl discusses how she used multimodal research methods to explore how Gen Z youth navigate their identities in digital spaces. Join the conversation!

3. Pop and Play

Season 2, Episode 2: Reality TV with Ioana Literat

“We really like to play. And so we decided we should make a podcast about it,” shares Associate Professor Nathan Holbert, host of “Pop and Play.” “This is a podcast about pop culture and play. Not a scholarly exercise of defining terms, but rather an act of playful construction.” 

With an emphasis on pop culture, Season 2, Episode 5 of “Pop and Play” features a special guest: Ioana Literat, Associate Professor of Communications, Computing and Technology in Education. Literat chats alongside hosts Haeny Yoon — Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education — and Holbert about the influence and potential pedagogy that can be found in reality TV. Tune in as Yoon gives Holbert his homework assignment: watch the reality hit series, Keeping up with the Kardashians! Later on, Literat takes listeners on a journey into the 90-Day Fiancé subreddit community, as the group discusses reality TV as a pedagogical resource and a center of community formation. Add to your playlist!

4. Teaching Today 

Episode: Building Bridges Through Discussion 

Created by the Center for Professional Education for Teachers (CPET), “Teaching Today” is a podcast designed by educators for educators. We recommend giving this series a listen, as it serves as the perfect support resource to further curriculum in your classroom. Class disscussions are perhaps one of the most critical ways in which students can engage in dynamic conversation and further process ideas. In this episode, special guest Brian Veprek, Strategic Curricular Solutions Architect at NewsELA, shares his expertise about the value of classroom conversations, along with the connections between reading, writing, speaking, and listening, with literacy being the bridge to cognition. Start listening!

5. CICE: The Podcast

Episode 1: Climate Activism in Higher Education Institutions

“CICE: The Podcast” is your go-to for discussion around comparative education and real-world issues. And it’s no secret that climate change is perhaps at the top of the list. In Episode 1, Noa Urbach, a masters student in TC’s International Educational Development program, looks at the past, present, and future of climate activism in higher education institutions. Through her own unique experience with on-campus climate action, Urbach compares climate activism through the three lenses of education, law, and ecology. Press play!

Stay connected! You can listen to these recommendations through our 2023 Spotify Playlist or check out other Teachers College podcasts on your favorite streaming services, including Apple, Google, and Spotify.