Two More SITE Sessions: Digital Storytelling

A Digital Storytelling Implementation Experience with Early Childhood Students
Aslihan Kocaman-Karoglu, Middle East Technical University, Turkey

  • What is digital storytelling?
    • Story telling as an ancient tradition; digital storytelling integrates visual, interactive, and reiterative with constructive ideas
    • “combining the art of telling stories with some mixture of digital graphics, text, recorded audio narration, video…” B. Robin, 2006
  • Purpose of the Study
    • Outlines application of DS in pre-school and effects discovered on students’ learning (age 6)
    • Fall 2007, two pre-school classrooms with 28 students and 2 teachers total
  • Stories in pre-school
    • Great way of communication in classrooms
    • Teacher tells story, students “dial in” on the words
    • May use music and interaction
  • Story for this study
    • Story of the first president of the Turkish Republic
    • Used historical photo graphs, his recorded speech, songs he liked, etc.
  • Procedure
    • Pre-knowledge from students
    • Data gathered through classroom observation, teacher interviews, assessment of students’ drawings
    • Students drew a picture of the story and explained the drawings
  • Results
    • Students had a good understanding of the subject from the digital story
      • Although their drawings were simple, they were able to retell what they saw in the story
      • Only 3 of the 28 students couldn’t explain the main idea from the story
    • Teachers felt that the content was more understandable, were willing to create stories, agreed that it helped get across more content in a limited time, felt that they didn’t have time or technical knowledge

Implementation of Digital Storytelling in the Classroom by Teachers Trained in a Digital Storytelling Workshop
Bulent Dogan and Bernard Robin, University of Houston, USA

  • Educational Uses of Digital Storytelling Site
  • Used to teach content, empower students, teach writing, meet technology standards
  • Little structured research on digital storytelling
  • Purpose of study
    • To document teachers use of digital storytelling right after the workshop
    • If they used DS in the classroom, in what ways were they used? What purposes did teachers have?
    • If they were not used, why not?
  • Results
    • 78% were unaware of DS before the workshop
    • After the workshop, half did not use DS in their classrooms
      • Almost all the teachers said that they would want to use it,
        • For students
          • Video yearbook
          • History project
          • Description of field trips
          • Social and science investigation
        • For teachers
          • As alternative to power point
          • Used to present content
    • Impacts on students
      • Helped students understand presentation skills
      • Increase in motivation and 21st century skills
    • Impacts on teachers
      • Barriers: Time, access to hardware
      • Technical support was not as much a problem
    • Other results
      • Affected teaching style
      • Shared DS with other teachers and family members
      • Easy to use and make
      • “Director’s chair” effect
  • Resources

Notes from Keynote on TPACK

Thinking Creatively: Teachers as Designers of Technology, Pedagogy, and Content (TPACK)
Punya Mishra and Matthew J. Koehler, Michigan State University

  • Three points to the refrain
    • Teaching with technology is a wicked problem
    • Wicked problems need creative solutions
    • Teachers want to create solutions
  • Teaching
    • It is messy: Teaching is always “about something” — the content
    • Yet every discipline is messy, too — the canon, phonics vs whole language
    • PCK from Shulman — content and teaching need to be transformed together
    • Learning to Think by Janet Donald
    • But, where is technology? — Too much for teachers to keep up with rapid change
    • Instead, we argue for developing a thoughtful and playful attitude towards dealing with the new media ecology
    • Take, for instance, the iPhone
      • Lots of software, highly unstable, opaque
    • Yet, information technology changes everything
      • Technology and content — the move from orality to writing (Plato “writing will implant forgetfulness)
      • Victor Hugo — the book will destroy the cathedral because people don’t have to go to a place to get knowledge
      • Technology changes practice and societies
    • Pedagogy and technology
      • Combine Google with open courseware and one laptop per child, and we are looking at a fundamental shift in learning and human culture
      • We teach using Moodle, but we worry about the “I agree” phenomenon where students do not put in their own ideas
      • Moodle prevents you from seeing other postings before you post your own
      • Teaching two sections of the same course — one in Moodle, one in Facebook — studying how this changes the social and educational discourse
    • Context: pedagogy, technology, and content work in a context
      • One laptop per child compared to a computer lab children visit once a week
      • Firewalls
    • To sum up — it is complicated with different contexts and no stopping rule
      • Solutions are not right or wrong, but good or bad that are unique and context dependent (and generate new problems)
      • Teaching with technology is wicked and typical solutions don’t work
  • Creative solutions
    • How do we survive in a context of change?
    • Trindadian guppy — flexible reproductive strategy with fewer babies in good times, lots of babies in bad times
    • In a world characterized by change, the best idea is to have lots of creative ideas for the new media ecology
      • What is creative?
        • I know it when I see it; easy to recognize, hard to define
        • Fantastic social innovation with educational payoff in the future — microcredit loans
        • Getting my son interested in reading by doing the March Madness brackets — he reads the newspaper every morning
    • What is creative
      • It is novel and unique in a useful way
      • It is effective
      • It is whole — complete and elegant
    • When you think about wicked problems, you need to have a “new” (novel, effective, and whole) idea
      • What does creativity have to do with it? A variation on a theme
        • Rubik’s Cube examples; tweaked to “Double Maze” by Scott Kim
      • We live in a new media ecology where standard approaches do not work
    • What are teachers and teacher educators to do?
  • Teachers are designers of the total PACKage
    • We have technology, pedagogy, and content with overlaps
    • It is at the center of these three that we have technological pedagogical content knowledge
    • TPACK (also stands for “total package”)
      • What does it do?
        • Opens new possibilities (such as Moodle and the “I agree” problem)
        • Is it NEW (novel, effective, and whole)
      • 3rd graders understanding maps
        • Mapquest, KidPix, Satellite, Virtual Trips
      • A possibility — sand creatures (the walls between art and engineering exist only in our minds)
      • The walls between technology and content only exist in our mind, if we are willing to play
    • Typically, pedagogy, content, and technology are separate (or, at least, technology is separate)
      • Like learning to play jazz one note as a time
      • Need an integrated, interdisciplinary, creative approach
      • Glenn Gould ‘- Implicit in electronic culture is the idea that multiple layers are a part of the creative process
    • Play a game where you mashup different ideas of content, pedagogy, and technology
  • Outro
    • Where do educators live? In a box, or in the middle of technology, content, and knowledge

Reflections
Punya and Matt continue to push me to think about how I think and talk about technology. Next week, when I return to teach ENG 315, we are talking about multiliteracies in the classroom, and I think that I will use TPACK to frame the discussion. Thinking about pedagogy (the writing workshop model), content (the expectations for K-8 writers), and technology (based on the Michigan content standards for technology). I need to come up with some ideas for scenarios, I think, to really prompt my students’ thinking about technology use. For now, I will keep mulling this over as I prepare yo deliver my presentation on Project WRITE.

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Two More SITE Sessions: Digital Photography and Social Networking

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: The Use of Digital Photography to Enhance Literacy Development in Young Children
Lauren Cummins, Regina Rees, and Kelly Bacroft, Youngstown State University

  • What do we know about literacy development?
    • Young children are natural storytellers, and they “write” stories through pictures
    • Children use pictures to help them remember about their story and be able to tell their story in more vivid language
    • Students write more when they are motivated
  • What do we know about digital imagery?
    • Images provide a motivating “hook” for students to get into writing
    • Photography lets children speak with pictures
    • Visual “think alouds” can helps students support the writing process
    • Learn content
  • Will the use of digital imagery to write a story increase a child’s amount of words produced and effective use of story elements?
    • Five day workshop, 1.5 hours per day
    • Urban elementary school
    • Thirteen third graders
  • Workshop outline
    • Day 1: Elements of an effective story
    • Day 2: Learning to use the cameras
    • Day 3: Choose images and storyboard
    • Day 4: Creating final story
    • Day 5: Story celebration
  • Results
    • Pre-writing sample from same prompt as compared to post showed increase in many students’ scores
      • For instance, 42 words in original story up to 107 in sample story shared here
      • Lowest increase was at least 67% and an average of 233%
    • Reflections:
      • Children tended to focus on telling about the pictures and needed more experience in storytelling with the pictures
      • Storyboards helped with the story elements
      • Most of the children took pictures of their families and this changed the story prompt for some
  • Implications
    • Children can improve their literacy skills through the use of digital imagery
    • This is especially true for urban children
    • Writing prompts need to be related to children’s read world experiences
    • Students are interested and motivated

Social Networking in PreK-6: What Are Webkinz, Club Penguin, and Other Online Communities All About?
Nancy Yost, Indiana University of Pennsylvania

  • Social networks
    • Profiles
    • Network
    • Photos
    • Videos
    • Personal Journals
    • Connecting with families and friends
  • 8.2 million 3-17 year olds were expected to visit virtual worlds in a month (eMarketer research group)
    • Where are young children going?
    • Why should we be interested? For instance, 10 million Peguin Club members.
    • They give kids a context for using social networking and instant messaging
    • Maybe we need to look at how these sites are used and figure out what’s there and how, perhaps, they can support ISTE standards and classroom connections
  • Content Analysis for Social Networking
    • Access
    • Parental Controal
    • Safety information
    • Ages for which the site is designed
    • Types of interactions allowed
    • ISTE standards addressed
    • Content standards adressed
    • User friendly?
  • Webkinz
    • Purchase a stuffed animal and get access code (then you get a one-year subscription to the website) and get to look at all the merchandise you can get virtually and for your stuffed figure
    • Parental controls to keep informed, page on safety information
    • Club house that has structured chat and they tried to have an open chat, but they closed it
    • Academic/content games in the Webkinz world
  • ISTE Standards
    • 1: Creativity and Innovation
    • 4: Critical Thinking, Problem-Solving, and Decision Making
    • 5: Digital Citizenship
  • What’s next
    • Overview of all sites, with recommendations for educational uses
    • What opportunities might we be missing by not using social networking sites in our classrooms?