The Easi-Speak™ Digital Microphone is FUN! Posted on 15 Apr 19:59 , 0 comments

The Easi-Speak USB Recorder is FUN!
Easi-Speak™ USB Recorder

I teach Kindergarten, and I was very pleased to be asked to review this unique little product via email from the good folks at Learning Resources! When I received the Easi-Speak Digital Microphone free from Learning Resources, I was surprised that it really looked like a toy! But it is much more than that. In my classroom, we have had gotten into the habit of recording our voices and making movies of ourselves reading using my iPads. Having this little Easi-Speak has given me an extra tool for that purpose! Of course, it does not take video, but it does record the children’s voices and allow them to hear themselves reading the passages back again. This is an extremely motivational activity for children that may not have previously cared much whether or not they could read a certain book with fluency, because once they get a chance to record their voices and listen to it played back, they are suddenly VERY interested in getting it RIGHT! 
When you take off the cap on the end of it, you find a USB port for charging!
Of course, you can do the same thing with an iPad or an iPod, but at a much higher price. Many teachers also would be far too nervous that their students would break these expensive items to actually turn the kids loose with them! There doesn’t seem to be any chance of this happening with the Easi-Speak! The worst thing that could happen is that they might drop it, (at it did drop, in my room!), yet nothing bad happened to it. It kept on working, same as always!
It charges up fully in four hours. 
The other thing that happened was that the children were playing with it at playtime, and it did finally get “full” with recordings and so the children couldn’t record any more. It took me a few minutes to read about how to efficiently delete all of the recordings at once, because I knew I didn’t need to save any of them.  (But I could have taken those audio files and done something with them, if I had wanted to!)  It turned out to be very easy: I popped it into my Mac computer, opened up the folder, and dragged all of the recordings in it to the trash! An added bonus for me was that it really did work on both my Mac at home and my PC at school. Go figure! That almost NEVER happens!
My kids love this great tool! And I LOVE that I never have to buy batteries for it!!! Hooray!

Pros:
– Charges in USB port

– Motivational
– Kids love it
– Sturdy design
– Rechargable battery
– Easy to use

Cons: 
Can get “full” of audio tracks and then won’t take any more until all are deleted

– Easiest to delete files on the computer
– Does not amplify the voice.  It’s not like a Karaoke microphone.

– Tricky to change tracks

Best Uses: 
Motivating kids to read,
– Motivating kids to talk
– Teaching kids to share

Heidi Butkus
http://heidisongs.blogspot.com
http://www.heidisongs.com