This year I'm determined to add a new level to the oral competency in the English Language Arts program. I've included the option of recording for the students. Instead of performing the oral (speech, monologue or what ever style the teacher has assigned) in front of the class, why not give students the option to play around with sound and record themselves? This not only eliminates terrible anxiety about public speaking but allows the students to layer other interesting sound elements into their own voice performances. They can play around with music and use a few seconds as an introduction. Special effects might give their performance that extra special ingredient!
When I think of how and what I listen to, on the radio and especially my beloved CBC podcasts, I can't imagine the voices without any music or other effects. Let the students broadcast themselves and encourage them to use their voice as one element in the entire oral communication. I look forward to seeing their creativity in action. The two obvious choices for this type of assignment are both free: Audacity and Myna. If you choose Audacity, make sure to download the LAME mp3 encoder so you can export your file. If you choose Myna at Aviary.com, you'll have an option of embedding the audio file on your class wiki or blog.
I tested it first before making a screencast for the students. You can listen to the audio