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Using VoiceThread for digital storytelling in schools


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Notes for a presentation about using VoiceThread for digital storytelling in schools

Published in: Education

Using VoiceThread for digital storytelling in schools

  1. 2. <ul><li>Fred Mindlin: Digital Storytelling Evangelist, web host & designer, creative computing consultant, writing coach </li></ul><ul><li>Christi Crutchfield: English Chair, creative writing instructor and ELD/SDAIE teacher at Aptos High School </li></ul>
  2. 3. <ul><li>In “educationeze,” it’s MultiModal Writing </li></ul><ul><li>While any use of a computer to help present a story could be called digital storytelling, it’s now a term of art for a presentation with a scripted voice-over narration which is illustrated by a series of mostly still images , sometimes with brief video clips, often with a musical background added </li></ul>
  3. 4. <ul><li>An online service with both free and paid models. </li></ul><ul><li>A way to create digital stories by using your computer’s microphone to record the story in the browser window, and </li></ul><ul><li>Illustrate the story with images uploaded from your computer, found on the internet, or transferred in from Flickr. </li></ul>
  4. 6. <ul><li>We helped run the 7 day summer writing program held at the Steinbeck Library in Salinas. </li></ul><ul><li>Our students ranged in age from grades 4-8. </li></ul><ul><li>The goal was to have them explore their digital storytelling skills using the writing process. </li></ul>
  5. 7. <ul><li>Terms for students to know (teachers , too!) </li></ul><ul><li>personal narrative </li></ul><ul><li>theme/big idea </li></ul><ul><li>sensory details </li></ul><ul><li>concrete details </li></ul><ul><li>digital </li></ul><ul><li>storyboard </li></ul><ul><li>images </li></ul><ul><li>voice, voiceover </li></ul><ul><li>upload, transfer </li></ul>
  6. 8. <ul><li>Next we are going to take you on a journey through what the students experienced in the writer’s camp. </li></ul><ul><li>You will also have a chance to do some hands-on writing as we go along! </li></ul>
  7. 9. <ul><li>Students made lists of topics they were interested in using various categories such as: </li></ul><ul><li>places they had visited </li></ul><ul><li>exciting or challenging life experiences </li></ul><ul><li>family members/friends </li></ul><ul><li>pets/favorite animals </li></ul><ul><li>sports and other physical activities (such as dance) </li></ul><ul><li>favorite or least favorite food </li></ul>
  8. 10. <ul><li>A trip to China to see the pandas </li></ul><ul><li>The story behind a chocolate bar </li></ul><ul><li>A fictional narrative about bunnies with hand drawn pictures </li></ul><ul><li>Here are some examples of the student’s voice threads: </li></ul>
  9. 11. <ul><li>Our students viewed paintings online and used their imaginations and concrete sensory details to describe the artwork. </li></ul><ul><li>Other ideas: Students can go outside and write down the sensory details around them, or they can walk through their houses and record the senses they’re using. </li></ul>
  10. 12. <ul><li>The Things They Carried is a collection of related stories by Tim O’Brien about a platoon of American soldiers in the Vietnam War. While some of these stories are based on O’Brien’s own experiences, the book is considered a work of fiction. </li></ul><ul><li>The following excerpts list some of the things the soldiers carried. </li></ul><ul><li>Consider this question while we read: In addition to the necessities, what are some of the non-material things these soldiers carried? </li></ul>
  11. 13. <ul><li>The things they carried were largely determined by necessity. Among the necessities or near necessities were P-38 can openers, pocket knives, heat tabs, wristwatches, dog tags, mosquito repellent, chewing gum, candy, cigarettes, salt tablets, packets of Kool-Aid, lighters, matches, sewing kits, Military Payment Certificates, C rations, and two or three canteens of water. Together, these items weighed between 15 and 20 pounds, depending upon a man's habits or rate of metabolism. </li></ul>
  12. 14. <ul><li>First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross carried letters from a girl named Martha, a junior at Mount Sebastian College in New Jersey. They were not love letters, but Lieutenant Cross was hoping, so he kept them folded in plastic at the bottom of his rucksack. In the late afternoon, after a day's march, he would dig his foxhole, wash his hands under a canteen, unwrap the letters, hold them with the tips of his fingers, and spend the last hour of light pretending. </li></ul>
  13. 15. <ul><li>Kiowa, a devout Baptist, carried an illustrated New Testament that had been presented to him by his father, who taught Sunday school in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. As a hedge against bad times, however, Kiowa also carried his grandmother's distrust of the white man, his grandfather's old hunting hatchet. </li></ul>
  14. 16. <ul><li>Your Turn: Write down a quick inventory of some (probably not all!) of the contents of your briefcase, bag, backpack, purse, wallet or pockets. Try using some of the senses (sight, sound, scent, taste, touch) and concrete details. (5 min) </li></ul>
  15. 17. <ul><li>Now: Turn to someone near you or get in groups of three and share what you have written. (5-7 min) </li></ul>
  16. 18. <ul><li>The Process: </li></ul><ul><li>Our students highlighted their top three favorite brainstorm topics for a possible story. </li></ul><ul><li>They wrote a little bit about each topic. </li></ul><ul><li>They shared their top 3 topics with a partner. </li></ul><ul><li>Then they chose one of those 3 with the understanding that a new topic could emerge later. </li></ul>
  17. 19. <ul><li>Once the students had chosen a topic, they asked themselves a few questions. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Is my topic too broad for me to do a good job? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do I know enough about my topic to share it with someone else? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the point of my story? What is the Big Idea or theme? </li></ul></ul>
  18. 20. <ul><li>1. Ideas Good writing has clear ideas, a purpose, or focus. It should have specific ideas and concrete and sensory details. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Organization Writing should have a beginning, middle, and an ending and be well organized and easy to follow. The beginning should grab the reader’s attention. </li></ul><ul><li>3. Voice Your writing should connect with your audience, fit your purpose for writing, and reveal your voice. </li></ul><ul><li>4. Word Choice Good writing has specific nouns and verbs and strong words that deliver the writer's message. </li></ul><ul><li>5. Sentence Fluency Sentences should vary in length, with a variety of sentence beginnings. The writing should flow smoothly from sentence to sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>6. Conventions Strong writing is edited for grammar, punctuation, capitalization, and spelling so the writer's ideas are easily understood. </li></ul><ul><li>+1—Presentation—It should look professional and readable on the paper. </li></ul>
  19. 21. <ul><li>Our students: wrote half page rough drafts based on one topic. </li></ul><ul><li>You: Write a short rough draft—about a paragraph--about one thing you carry. What special meaning does this thing have? </li></ul><ul><li>Consider how this will sound when read out loud—make it expressive, watch for flow and rhythm. Try to come up with a “ hook ,” a way to grab audience attention with a question or something unexpected. (10 min) </li></ul>
  20. 22. <ul><li>Our Students: Partnered up and did a peer edit, checked in with the instructors and then revised. </li></ul><ul><li>You: Share your writing with your partner(s). Get feedback. Make any revisions if needed. (7 minutes) </li></ul>
  21. 23. <ul><li>Our students: did prep work for the digital stories on paper via storyboards. </li></ul><ul><li>You: Take what you have written about the thing you carry and begin storyboarding it and planning your images. (7-10 min) </li></ul>
  22. 24. <ul><li>With your partner(s) practice your narration. Read it slow but not in monotone. Does it flow? Is it interesting? (5-7 min) </li></ul>
  23. 25. <ul><li>Using one volunteer, we will now demo the process for creating a Voice Thread. </li></ul>