Tag Archives: perspective

Picture Poetry – More #ETMOOC Digital Storytelling

After experimenting with the 5 Card Flickr Story this morning, I wanted to try another medium that would allow me to more easily integrate text and images. I was reminded of a free app I had downloaded quite a while ago but never fully explored: Visual Poet.

This app lets you choose three images from Flickr, Google, Tumblr or your own photo library. Once you select an image, you can decide what portion you want to include in your story and then you can tap and add text on top of the image. You can then add a title, auto-insert credits for the photos you use, and add some comments about your story. From the app you can publish directly to Tumblr or you can email the story. The app hasn’t received very good reviews so I’m not sure if it works well on every device but I didn’t have any problems when creating my stories.

I tested two different ways of using the app. First, similar to the 5 Card Flickr Story, I made a story with the first images that came up (See The Cottage below) with I went to search for images. This required some spontaneity and creativity but less reflection.

The Cottage

Then, I tried creating a story with more purpose and forethought. I searched specifically for images relating to ed tech to start my story and then for images that matched ideas relating to where I wanted my story to go (e.g., possibilities, perspective). I consciously sculpted my story, searching for images that I felt could convey the concepts I was looking for without narrowing my search by topic (I used the “Today’s Interesting Photos” option in the Flickr search). This broadened my photo selection to images that I might not have considered otherwise and prompted me to progress down new paths as I developed my story. At first, I imagined my story ending with something about collaboration or sharing but when I saw the camera image, I loved the idea of saying something about the importance of perspective. And so I ended up with a story about ed tech, one that I had a fuzzy idea of when I began and a different understand of when I finished.

Anything is Possible

Photo Attribution:
Original imagery for panel one by Anonymous/Unknown
Original imagery for panel two by Neighya (Elné)
Original imagery for panel three by danska8

Has anyone else used Visual Poet for digital storytelling? What do you think of this method/medium? 

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Honoring Everyone: Integrating More Than Technology

https://i0.wp.com/www.districtadministration.com/sites/districtadministration/files/DigWisdom.jpeg

Last week, I attended a one day conference with Marc Prensky where we discussed “Digital Wisdom.” Prensky defined digital wisdom as combining things our brains do well with what computers do better.

This ability, to be digitally wise, is available to everyone today who is willing to integrate technology into her or his life, including students. In fact, students may find themselves having digital wisdom more naturally than others because technology is the only context they have ever known. Students have not had to immigrate from a context of no or minimal technology into a technology-rich context. Instead, students today have been born into a world where technology is constantly available at their fingertips, no longer just a “click” away but literally a touch.

With that in mind, it seems reasonable to question how well we honor students’ experience, knowledge, and expertise with digital wisdom. Especially when students are constantly using technology for a range of tasks in school and in life. Prensky made a comment that any professional development day without kids in the room is a big mistake. Yet, most PD days are scheduled specifically so that students do not attend. Imagine what could happen if we focused not just on integrating technology into the classroom but also students’ perspectives and ideas about technology.

Thought Bubble

I’m inspired by the idea of trying to honor all perspectives: teachers, students, administrators, and families, in regards to innovative teaching methods, which today, often include technology. This fits nicely with my Reggio background and the belief that all children, from a very young age, should be honored and respected as contributors of meaningful and insightful ideas and reflections. As we work to make our early childhood classrooms more child-centered and responsive to young children’s ideas, reflections, and suggestions (about technology in education), we can also be working towards the same goals in older grades.

My hope is that over time, we can strive to honor everyone in a classroom, from the quiet, three-year-old to the verbose, digitally wise student who would like to have her ideas for technology incorporated in the week’s lesson plan. Over the past few years, many schools and teachers have been working hard to integrate technology into their classrooms but maybe in the push/rush to do this, we are forgetting the lessons we teach our students: problem solve, ask for help, collaborate, research, and learn something new everyday. Let’s apply the same lessons to ourselves and with our peers. Our schools are full of digitally wise students (and families, teachers, and administrators!), let’s utilize and honor all of their expertise and experience to integrate not just technology but a range of ideas, passions, and perspectives about how to integrate and why to integrate technology. Maybe then we can have more responsive, passion-directed teaching and learning in our classrooms.

What does your classroom footprint look like?