why we’re here

or maybe just me…but I find that digital storytelling works best when you see firsthand the possibilities of successful stories in the hands of a 10th grader. One of the great pleasures I experienced as a teacher was the unexpected surprises in student projects that could humble even the more accomplished educators.  Craig’s story is from western Australia, a rather remote area from the country’s more populated eastern and northeastern shores, but he is able to do a great job…which should give all of us hope that we can achieve meaningful success in our final products this semester.

update: (upon realizing the length requirement for this week’s blog…oops!) I actually began looking at compelling tales first, but found too many of the projects too self-indulgent. Based on this week’s readings, perhaps the personal nature of DST eventually leads to a certain amount of “me-ism”, or as I heard recently: the “I” generation: ipod, iphone, itunes, facebook, twitter–all eventually scream: “look at me!” in the world of LifeCaching.

So I moved away from compelling stories and looked at humor. Last semester, Mills Kelly showed us clips from a humorous spoof of Ken Burns-style tales about fictitious African-American astronauts. Then I thought better of it when I saw it again recently and realized that Mills wisely left out the vulgar parts of the video. But I was still intrigued with the idea of humor in DST. Finally, I reverted back to what I know best: education. I was happy to see a project outside of the US, as different sensibilities are always refreshing. Yet, Craig’s tale is one we can all relate to: a triumphalist story of someone overcoming poverty to help others in need. The fact that a 10th-year student created such a professional and compelling tale, was just a plus. And with that…I eventually realized that the compelling story I initially set out to find, found me.

Category: W2: Digital Story
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