This post is taken from my K12 Online Conference presentation, “What If the Story Changed?” Access the presentation here.
What If? Telling your Story…
This presentation is about changing the story…and that can begin with telling stories.
Today’s technology connects us with the capability to take the stories of our lives and tell them with a variety of different media to make the story come alive, in a brand new way…
We can also use technology to tell those stories to people we have never met, nor will probably ever meet, at least face to face.
What if schools focused on helping students tell stories, and in new ways?
What story does this tell? (picture: scantron form)
And what story does this tell, when the storytelling is between two people, and one is responsible for evaluating the story? Is that all we can offer? (picture: graded essay)
Instead of grading someone’s story, how will you help students write themselves into existence?
There are numerous ways today, afforded by easily accessible technologies.
What if teachers led the way, with telling their own stories, using the technologies of 2011?
Time gets in the way, doesn’t it? Interest does too. Grading, parent phone calls, planning lessons all are potential yah buts. The pressures of standardized curriculum and assessment contribute as well. There’s only so much time in the day, right, and they can learn all of this on their own anyway. After all, their digital natives…
For students, creating stories beyond Facebook means video.
Video is the language of their age.
Being literate today means being able to compose with multiple media.
In my opinion, if you can’t craft a video message, put your words into imagery, and tell your story, you’re on the outside looking in.
And I’m not talking Dylan’s Couch Episode 8 either, where we have a student talking about their history project, although the video has almost 1.4 million views. Look at the potential audience your students have!
I’m talking about serious messages, such as True America, where a Hispanic student explores immigration from Mexico, with the potential of explaining her views to her peers around the world, to help in providing a different context for understanding the complex country known as America.
Here is what her teacher wrote about the potential for telling a new story. It’s worth reading.
“Here is a challenge to the young people of our country and those on the other side of the world–to go through the wall that separates the ambassadors and heads of state–to reach into the hearts and minds of peers in foreign lands with the truth as we live it, as we can best convey it–partly in image, partly in sound, but always in our own voice?” (Matt Formato)
So, what if we could help them create new stories, their own personal anthems?
And what if we could help them create a competitive voice, one that could emerge from the massive amounts of content uploaded each day…and be heard.
What if we helped our students tell their stories?
Would that help to change our story?