Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Shape of a Story: #WalkMyWorld #LE3

When we own the story, we can write a brave new ending. - Brene Brown
WEEK THREE: Exploring the story of you by considering the shape of a story. Stories come in multiple modes: orally passed down from generation to generation, images capturing a specific time and place, documents representing written thoughts, and video clips revealing the sounds and motion of real people and events. The third learning event of #WalkMyWorld invites you to explore the multiple modes that shape the stories you tell the world.
One way I integrate technology while meeting the academic demands of English Language Arts and social studies is through student-created documentaries. These short, two-to-seven minute films, combine multiple media sources with a voice-over narration to demonstrate an understanding of a subject-matter topic or personal event. Since quality documentaries use the THREE ACT STORY ARC (see image above), I decided to diagram the shape of an award winning story from the National History Day Competition.

This is a diagram of a student-created documentary about Henry Ford: Driving America Into the Future.

Notice how the obstacles Henry Ford encountered built the narrative and the multiple modes shaped the story. Next, WATCH the documentary and notice how the narrative is shaped by the author’s ability to weave multiple modes ( e.g., audio, visual, text, and transition effects) into a compelling story. Finally, READ the transcript of the documentary. Research suggests the use of video-editing software scaffolds an intentional revision process as students determine which media source(s) enhance their voice and shape a stronger narrative (Chisholm & Trent, 2013; Parker, 2013; Vasudevan et al., 2010). Do you agree? If your students are turning in boring reports, consider using student-created documentaries as an instructional approach to creating compelling narratives and shaping three act stories.

Invitation: THINK of a story you know well. This could be a cultural folk tale, a song, a TV show or the STORY OF YOU. CREATE a diagram showing the shape of that story. ANNOTATE your diagram to identify plot points at key events in the narrative. You can create this diagram in Google Slides…or simply sketch it out on paper and take a digital photo. DESCRIBE how your diagram and the modes (text, image, audio, video) used in the story affect the shape of the story. SHARE your creation on Twitter using the hashtag #WalkMyWorld #LE3. It’s time. What will you share? Explore.Play.Create.Learn.

Interested in learning more about #WalkMyWorld, visit: walkmy.world

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