Story Telling Tools

Do you love reading? [Explored #28] by Fiduz, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License  by  Fiduz 

Story telling or the conceptualization and internalization of a concept in a thematic way is  often how students make sense of new learnings. When we ask students to journalm create a presentation, chart, skit, role play, tableau, video, etc. to demonstrate learning they are engaging in storytelling.

There are numerous Web 2.0 tools which allow students to collaborate, create, and produce high quality digital presentations or stories. Below are some of my favourite:

Xtranormal

Video is not only an effective tool to enhance and differentiate instruction (many of our learners are visual and auditory learners who struggle with literacy skills) but it also has great potential as a student medium to demonstrate understanding of learning outcomes. One free Web 2.o application which allows students to create videos is Xtranormal. I recently experimented with this medium, individually and then as part of the group project. Although, it has its limitations – for example, I think it is a better fit for elementary and middle years students rather than high school; it is a fun and interesting way to engage learners in creating a story board, dialogue, and animation to represent understanding of a concept. Xtranormal videos can be shared by a link or by uploading to Youtube. Below is an example of a video I made advocating the use of Web 2.0.

Prezi

Prezi is a unique Web 2.0 application that allows you to create fantastic visual presentations which zoom in and out, demonstrating the big picture and then narrowing the focus to look at details. Rotating effects help create a visually appealing presentation, allowing you to view pictures and video along with text. Prezi takes the PowerPoint presentation to an entirely new level. The drawback to Prezi, is unlike PowerPoint there is no option for adding audio commentary unless you screencast it with another tool adding the audio.

It is as easy to use as pointing and clicking your mouse. Although you need to work with the tools a bit to find out which effects are best suited for your presentation, once you master the zebra, it is very user friendly. In addition, the tutorials on the website are extremely useful. Best of all is the fact that it is free!

 To see a sample Prezi presentation click on the link below:

Great Jazz Bassists and their Influences Throughout the Ages

Prezi  is a fantastic way of creating an interactive search that could be student generated. The Prezi presentation could be utilized by teachers and students as an exploration engine, instructional medium, or assessment tool. This could be done as introductions to units of learning (teacher directed), a way of creating learning activities (student and teacher), or as a form of assessment as the student creates the Prezi as a demonstration of the outcomes. The Prezi can be a living document to which other students can add. Of course, the advantage is the immediate way this can be done (sharing editing privileges with the entire class) and the accessibility – students can edit and collaborate from home, as long as they have access to the internet! To find out more take a look at the tutorial below:

Getting Started: Prezi in 3 Minutes

Blabberize 

This tool allows you to take a pictue crop around the mouth and make it talk! The result is a humerous and interesting medium in which you can tell a story. History teachers can make landmarks talk, English teachers can deliver Shakespearean sonnets from the Bard himself! For a better idea of how this works take a look at the vidoe below:

For other great ideas on how to use Blabberize click on the links below:

Teach Web 2.0 – Blabberize

Teaching Tomorrow – Blabberize

Glogster

This tool allows teachers and students to create dynamic interactive digital posters that summarize their learning while engaging the viewers! Glogster Edu provides you the tool with the specific needs of educators in mind. Some of the benefits apart from the fact that it is a free resource, is the ease in using the tool.

ICT Pad – Glogster in Education

Teachers – Creating Interactive Posters

Toondo

Billed as the fasted way to build cartoons, this easy to use resource provides you with a choice of one, two, three, of mulitple frame cartoons as well as a selection of characters, settings and props. It is easy to use, easy to edit and fun. The key to this resource is having the students create a storyboard first and then find the graphics to match. See an example of cartoon I created in about 15 minutes.

 

Vuvox

Takes your pictures, allows you to add captions and creates a collage or slideshow presentaton that is an engaging and effective way to tell a story.

For more ideas on how to story tell check out this great Wiki resources:

Allan Levine – 50+ Web 2.0 Ways to Tell A Story

 

 
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