Shared Article #1–Multimedia Storytelling

New Insights:  This first article addresses the growing recognition of diversity of learners across age ranges, including adult learners.  Student populations are rarely homogenous, and classrooms are not static settings; rather, they are sites where many languages, cultures, and learning styles co-exist.  While this diversity has great potential for enhancing, there is also room for misunderstanding and misrepresentation of minorities.  The questions that have been arising for many educators are concerned with issues such as equality, marginalization, social justice, stereotypes, etc.  For many years as an educator, I became more conscious of this growing diversity and began to reflect on my own pedagogical assumptions and underpinnings.  Did my teaching approaches allow for expression of diverse cultural perspectives and experiences?  Was I reinforcing dominant cultural values and literacy practices through my teaching?  How could I encourage all students to bring their linguistic and cultural resources in to the learning activities?  These were the kinds of questions that led me to enter the Languages, Cultures, and Literacies program in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University (SFU).

Trends:  Digital storytelling is becoming a popular way for learners to share information about themselves and related to many topics.  Stories are increasingly recognized for their potential to build connections between tellers and listeners.  They make information personal, and this personal element can lead to increased empathy.  I know a professor at SFU who has students tell the story of their literacy development from earliest childhood to the present through digital storytelling.  That way they can share the cultural practices around narrative, influential books, teachers, etc that are part of their unique learning pathway.  Since students of all ages use a variety of media tools and devices, the scope of story telling can be expanded from words on a page to still and moving images, sounds, etc.

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/empowering-students-through-multimedia-storytelling-michael-hernandez

In Hernandez’s article, he offers educators some salient tips on steps that ensure a successful outcome to the digital storytelling project, practical steps, and benefits of this learning tool.  Enhanced thinking, research, writing skills, and public speaking skills are just the beginning.  Transformation of social relations and communities is possible, according to Hernandez, and I have no trouble imagining the positive changes that could occur.  Adult learners, I believe, respond to stories with as much curiosity as children do and have as much desire for their stories to be known.

 

 

 

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