Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Let Me Tell You a Story...

This week in Images4Education we did digital stories. We were given a large choice of tools, but I chose Mixbook. I like the idea of creating something that actually looks like a book, where you can post pictures and text.

I first wrote a short story, a sort of fairy-tale with my son in the main role. I shared it with him and he liked it. Then I got him and my husband to act it out with me. We had a lot of fun and here is the result:

Mixbook - Create Beautiful Photo Books and Scrapbooks! | View Sample Photo Books | Create your own Photo Book

Obviously, the same thing could be done in class. The students could collaborate and write a story, then they could take photos of each other acting the story out. Finally, they could create the Mixbook. One word of warning: Mixbooking is highly addictive. Your students could spend hours changing fonts and backgrounds and experimenting with different stickers. The result is beautiful, though I have to say that Mixbooks look much nicer on the site than when they are embedded. The Mixbook site gives you the option of flipping through pages at your own speed, and the book resembles a real book. If you can find a few extra minutes, you can look at my book here.

Then I decided to use the same pictures and tell a different story altogether. There is a group in Flickr where members tell a story in five frames and I wanted to try something similar. I called the story His Favourite Toy:

His Favourite Toy
I have a pretty clear idea about what I wanted to say, but do you? You see, the fun in the "Tell a story in 5 frames" starts after a member has posted the story. This is what they say:

"Tell a Story in 5 Frames has two important parts. The first part is creating and telling a story through visual means with only a title to help guide the interpretation. The second part is the response of the group to the visual story. The group response can take many forms such as, a poetic or prose rendering of the visualization, a critique on the structure of the story, comments on the photograph, or other constructive forms of response. Telling and enjoying stories should create entertainment for the group as well as offer insight into the universal elements that help create a story for an international audience. The more people who respond , as either story tellers or respondents, the greater the reward for all. "

And, again, what a great tool in the classroom. The pictures would have to be prepared in advance, either by the teacher or by the students. Then the students could create their stories in groups or on their own. This activity can also be used to practise grammar and vocabulary. The format of the writing could be predetermined (Write a letter of complaint, an email to a friend...). If the students like the activity, it could be done over and over, each time with a different set of pictures.

And now... I have an idea...

You see, I'll be absent for a week. Going somewhere really nice, will tell you all about it soon. In the meantime, why don't you make yourselves at home in my blog? Try and respond to my story. Pretend that you don't know who the people in the pictures are. Or you can write a poem. Anything you like.

When I come back, I'll try to gather your comments in another post.

12 comments:

KALINAGO ENGLISH said...

One day, the dog smelled something very, very strange.

He sat up in the bed.

He whined. Luka snored.

The little toy dog barked.

Luka snored.

Oh no, thought the little puppy. How will I wake the family up?

He wagged his tail against Luka's face.

Luka snored....


next?

Janet Bianchini said...

The little puppy kept on trying to wake Luka up but he was sleeping like a log.

The little puppy decided to see if anyone else was awake in the house.

He gently opened the door and.....

next?

Natasa said...

Keep them coming. I am officially not here. Should have travelled to a mountain today, but the weather was awful (strong wind, sleet, you name it). Hope we'll go tomorrow and I'll have no Internet access for a week. So, go ahead, kids, and play.

He gently opened the door and...

Irfan Mahmood said...

encouraging, good info.

subu.ps said...

what a good idea to make those little brains think!!

My version goes like this.

Love you my puppy, little sweet puppy

Love this gift from my sweet mummy

Love to sleep with you my sweet puppy

Love to play with you my sweet puppy

Love to learn with you my sweet puppy.

Chio said...

This is how I think the story goes:

One day, a little boy got a cute little dog toy he always wanted.

He played with it for the whole day, and even kept him in the bed.

Next day, it was just another toy, out of many others he has.

Later, he was no longer interested in it. The dog will stay up there for many days, weeks or even months.

I hope I was close, hehe.

Natasa said...

Guys, I am back from my holiday. I am glad to see that I have left my blog in good hands.
Actually, Chio, that's exactly how my story goes. The title "His Favourite Toy" is ironic. Still, the great thing about pictures is that you can interpret them in different ways, or they can just be the visual input for your own original idea. I love the poem, Subu.
And, Karenne and Janet, please come back and finish your beautiful story. And bring more people along. I am duying to find out what happened when the doggy opened the door. The urge to jump in is big, but I promised myself that I wouldn't do that. So, I am leaving this topic open.

Janet Bianchini said...

He gently opened the door and made his way to the next room. He was surprised to see that the door was wide open.

He went inside and jumped up onto the bed, expecting to see Luka's parents sleeping. They were not. The room was eerily empty.

Unperturbed but increasingly curious, the little puppy went back to Luka's room and then.....

x said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Nemesis said...

I just wanted to say that I love the work you are doing. I don't have children but I have nieces and nephews and I tell them that education is the key to everything they want. Keep up the excellent work.

Natasa said...

Thank you for your kind words. Your nieces and nephews are lucky to have you.

bruce lee said...

hi my friend

your web log is very lovely

i want you see my weblog

i know you like it

have good life

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