Discover Studying Abroad

5 podcasts to binge this summer before you go to college

Watching the same six shows on your Netflix queue during your holidays is so passé. Podcasts are the way to go this summer.
BY Anandamayee Singh |   28-05-2019

BrainGain Magazine

Imagine sitting on a lawn chair at the beach, basking under the sun and listening to the soothing voice of a journalist undoing the facts you learned in history class. Or filling that hot midday lull in a car full of sleepy people with a theatrical narration of a story by Octavia E. Butler. All these possibilities and more can be realised with these five podcasts, perfect for summer before you start college.

  1. Levar Burton Reads
    Actor Levar Burton is to child literacy in America what David Attenborough is to nature documentaries. As host of the show Reading Rainbow, Burton made millions of American children to fall in love with reading from 1983-2006. Now, he brings a podcast for teenagers and adults, celebrating his favourite form of fiction, the short story.  With over 40 short stories read in his velvety voice, this podcast is perfect for a day at the beach or that solo road trip to your nearest hill station.

  2. Surprisingly Awesome
    This idea for this podcast was born on the sets of the award winning comedy The Big Short, thanks to the friendship between Adam McKay and Adam Davidson. The two friends tried to convince each other of the value of seemingly mundane topics. The episodes are in a similar format, including discussions about mold, pigeons and crying. There are only 23 half an hour episodes of the show, making it the perfect thing to binge the last three weeks of break, right before freshers week, where you can impress the people around you with all the surprisingly awesome things you know.

  3. Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness
    Jonathan Van Ness of Queer Eye fame explores anything and everything that strikes his fancy. From a discussion about figure skating with the legendary Michelle Kwan, to how to best fight climate change, Van Ness brings a wide range of experts and topics to his listeners every week. The show features Van Ness’ brand of endearing, yet irreverent humour, making for the most entertaining education after a day of frolicking in the sun. All the knowledge you get from listening to him will also help in all the midnight debates you participate in your dorm. That happens, I promise.

  4. Bad with Money
    Yes, talking about money is often overwhelming and boring. That is probably why so many people are bad at handling it. Like the host of this podcast, Gabby Dunn, who started the show to try and figure out what to do about the mountain of bills she had accrued in her thirties. It is Dunn’s personality, and humorous approach to sorting out her financial situation that make this podcast the least boring informational conversation about money. Dunn has conversations with her parents, her bankers and her friends, exploring how and why people are bad with money. This is the perfect podcast to listen to in preparation of the financial responsibilities and freedom that college will bring.

  5. Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist History
    Malcolm Gladwell is a recipient of the Order of Canada, the author of five bestselling non-fiction books and a writer for the New Yorker. Gladwell’s podcast, Revisionist History is built on his signature style of exploring the neglected and misunderstood stories. With three 10 episode seasons,  the show has explored a wide range of topics, including why golf is evil, how a political friendship brought about a famine and delayed the end of the second world war and how the historic decision to desegregate schools in the U.S. actually made life more difficult for Black students. Gladwell plays the sharp and charming host necessary on this journey of reviewing the histories held universally true. This is a great podcast to listen to if you want to develop a more critical approach to your education. Textbooks do not tell the whole truth, and an important part of pursuing higher education is challenging singular narratives told at times in classrooms.

Related Stories:
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Looking for a great way to spend your summer? Learn a foreign language


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