Introduction to digital storytelling

What can be created in 3 hours???

What is Digital Storytelling?


Digital storytelling involves combining the art of telling stories with a mixture of digital graphics, text, recorded audio narration, video and music to present information on a specific topic.

Why should I think about digital storytelling in my classroom?
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TEN top reasons for implementing storytelling:

  1. Inspires dedication to work
  2. Promotes problem solving
  3. Embraces diversity
  4. Captivates attention
  5. Peaks interest in writing
  6. Fosters group dynamics
  7. Addresses different learning styles
  8. Creates positive classroom climate
  9. Incorporates multiple intelligences
  10. Encourages creativity

What is the digital storytelling process?
  • Pre-writing: brainstorming, collecting images, researching, outlining, and storyboarding
  • Drafting: creating a script and developing form
  • Revising: modifying images and organization
  • Editing: timing, images, and narration
  • Publishing: the final product
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How do I begin digital storytelling?

There are a number of ways that teachers use and apply digital storytelling in the classroom. The intention is to follow and learn the process FIRST by creating one for yourself. A clear understanding of what and how you might manage, adapt and/or chunk the process with students is then known.

When working with students, the seven main steps as mentioned by Angie Simmons are:
1. Share learning intentions and show examples
2. Put the digital camera to work
3. Plan the story
4. Create a storyboard
5. Gather the resources
6. Create the digital story
7. Share and celebrate the digital stories




The seven elements for creating effective and interesting multimedia stories are:
1. A Point (of View)
  • Stories are told to make a point and should not be presented as a recitation of mere facts. Define the premise of your story so that all parts can serve to make the point. Consider your audience and direct the point to them.
2. A Dramatic Question
  • You want to capture your audience’s attention at the beginning of the piece and hold their interest throughout. Typically you want to pose the dramatic question in the opening lines and resolve it in the closing lines.
3. Emotional Content
  • Emotional content can help hold your audiences attention. The images, effects, music and tone of voice all lend to contributing emotion to the piece. Try to keep the elements consistent with the emotion of the moment.
4. The Gift of Your Voice
  • Your voice is a great gift and even thought you don’t like to hear it, others do. If you “read” your script your audience will not know how to react. Take time to learn and practice your script so you can speak in a conversational voice. Record several takes and select the best one. Trust that your audience will think it is perfect.
5. The Power of The Soundtrack
  • Music is a big plus to a digital story. The right music can set the story in time and can convey emotion. Play music behind an image and a specific emotion is generated. Change the music behind the same image and an entirely different emotion is experienced. Sound effects can add tension and excitement to a piece, but be careful, they can be a distraction too.
6. Economy
  • Plan to leave some of your work on the “cutting room floor”. A compact, fast moving digital story will contain only those elements necessary to move the audience from beginning to end. We know that our brains are constantly filling in (from our own experiences) details from suggestions made by sights and sounds. Don’t give every minute detail to clarify your story, let your audience fill in some of the blanks.
7. Pacing
  • The rhythm of the piece is what keeps your audience’s interest in the story. Changing pace within the story can facilitate moving the audience from one emotion to another. Music tempo, speech rate, image duration, and panning and zooming speed all work to establish pace. Generally pace will be consistent, but one in a while it will pause, accelerate, decelerate, stop or blast-off. Trust your own senses, we all move at our own pace.


What might storyboards have to do with digital storytelling?
Storyboards are visual representations that aid in the the creation process of digital storytelling. Storyboards layout images in sequential order to create the the flow of the production. They can also include technical aspects and explanations of design. Each project is unique and varies in its needs; specific requirements should be altered. The following is suggested content: a brief description, comments, audio, transition and an estimate of length.
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Educational Resources

Digital Storytelling Q sheet.doc

Digital Storytelling for Educators
What is Storyboarding???
Six Scenes Storyboard pdf
Storyboard ppt
Digital Storytelling - Movie Planning Sheet
Integrating Digital Storytelling in Your Classroom
NZ Science Kids -Digital Storytelling with Movie Maker
Digital Storytelling Resources
More Resources
English Online
50 Web2 ways to tell a Story
Excellent Web2 Tools for Digital Storytelling
Adobe - 7 steps for Digital Storytelling
Digital Storytelling : Visual Literacy and 21st Century Skills
Peer Coaching - Digital Storytelling
DigiTales
Cyber Bee - Preparing to make a Powerpoint - Step by Step
Cyber Bee - Powerpoint - Step by StepNEW

Articles about Digital Storytelling:

What we should know
Digital Storytelling as Life Writing
Support Digital Literacy