Sunday, October 9, 2011

Week Six: Digital Storytelling

From a digital storytelling learning experience, students would have the opportunity to gain the following skills:  written communication skills to describe, inform, entertain, and/or to explain; oral communication skills for narration and an oral presentation; non-verbal communication skills through the use of other media, such as still pictures and video; technological skills such as using audio effect, video effects, editing, inserting text overlays, applying transitions, using jpg files and program files, folders, camera skills and filming;  other planning and organizing skills such as utilizing an outline, a storyboard, following through with the project; and if working within a group, cooperation skills, communication skills, and conflict resolution skills.

For a teacher to properly implement the use of digital storytelling in his/her classroom, the teacher will need to have an understanding of digital storytelling and should have completed an example him/herself to be able to demonstrate and model the process.  Training could be from personal research on digital storytelling via the internet, software instructions/directions, workshops, classes, professional development courses, etc.  In short, the amount of preparation and training will depend upon the individual teacher and his/her previous knowledge and experience with technology.  As seen in our lab for this course, the spectrum of previous knowledge/experience of the teacher candidates is wide and varied.  However, it must be noted that if a teacher would like to utilize digital storytelling but does not have a strong background with technology, there are plenty of resources and examples available on the internet for the teacher to be successful with the lesson.

Digital storytelling would be beneficial to shy, quiet students because the student would be able to produce the final product without having to leave his/her 'comfort zone'.  However, if an oral presentation is required of the final product, this may hinder the shy student.  Also for students struggling with writing skills, so 'shy' in the sense of a lack of confidence in his/her writing ability, the digital story will also make available to them another form of communication.  Exposure to digital storytelling for a shy and/or quiet student may open an avenue for that student that he/she never knew existed, allowing him/her to have an outlet for expression.  Digital storytelling may also help this student to realize his/her potential in communication.

For an outspoken student, digital storytelling will provide for him/her an opportunity to express him/herself in ways other than verbal while also exposing him/her to technology and creativity as additional channels to progress with communication skills.

For integrating digital storytelling into the classroom, I've learned that I must take into account the spectrum of technological experience/knowledge of each student, allow ample time and practice for those who lack technological skills to be successful with the assignment, when considering my obejectives for digital storytelling I will also need to consider the spectrum of  communication skills of the student, and most of all, to allow the students to have 'fun' with this assignment rather than seeing it as merely an assignment to complete.  Digital storytelling has a wide range of uses for history, science, language arts, and most other areas of concentration; each student will learn more by teaching others.

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