This is Day 24 of 31 of the Slice of Life Writing Challenge at www.twowritingteachers.wordpress.com.
Kathy Schrock spoke at the NCTIES Conference two weeks ago on the topic of Digital Storytelling. I decided to blog about my notes that I took and what the notes have begun to mean to me especially as I design digital storytelling lessons.
Instead of traditional marketing, companies are using storytelling to captivate our attention on television. Have you seen Leo Sandcastle created by the NFL? Take a look at http://www.nfl.com/sandcastle#play-video
Storytelling in commercials is conversational and appears real not staged. The intent is to quickly jar the viewer into an awareness of the topic and compel the viewer to action.
Students are accustomed to teachers talking during lessons, but what if teachers prepared digital stories to captivate and compel our student viewers to action? The simpler the story, then the more likely it will stick. Malcolm Gladwell talked about the Stickiness Factor in which stories have to be memorable in order to stick to our hearts and minds. Students check out on teachers when teachers talk and lecture. The teacher should have a plan as to the kind of story that she wants kids to see. The story should make an impact and touch hearts during the first five minutes so that the audience will be hooked.
Annette Simmons discusses empathy and sensory detail in stories to connect with readers or viewers. The story should include:
A compelling narrative
Provide meaningful content
Employ music and sound effects
Involve thoughtful reflection
The University of Houston has a digital storytelling section of their website. I especially like the “Spies of the Revolutionary War” clip. After watching an example or two from the website, students could be inspired to write a script and story for a picture from history. These great examples of digital storytelling from history will hook students and engage their brains!
I like that students could also create their own digital stories after researching a topic, writing a script, gathering images and putting it all together. I have spoken in previous posts about the power of iMovies, but would like to share how much I love using iMovie Trailers in my classes. I have included a link to some iMovie templates that I use to help students as they plan their storyboards with iMovie Trailers. Having students generate their own digital stories in 30 Hands app, Tellagami app or iMovie has given my students the chance to consider their audience and share the most captivating information.
As Catherine Courage said in the You Tube video above, “Embrace, empower and insist on creativity” through digital storytelling as you design lessons and as you have students tell their stories. I want to enable my students to ignite their audience’s passion, emotion and vision while leaving the audience wanting more. If I can teach my students to empathize and put themselves in the shoes of the ones who will be watching their digital stories, then I believe they will embrace creativity.