The Strength of Weak Ties

Everyone participates. Everyone contributes. Leveraging the power of digital networks to connect people, resources and ideas to drive creativity and innovation forward...and actually accomplish something!

Monday, December 05, 2005

Digital Storytelling Day 3-The Gift

Today we built a digital story for the kids, called Coming Home, which is my story about coming home from an extended six year stay in the South. It was very simple, with about 10 images (from Flickr) and a single song (from , but it was based on the MasterCard commercials:

Watching the Bears on Sunday...0 dollars
Traffic Jams on the Kennedy...0 dollars
Seeing and smelling a cornfield again...0 dollars
Coming Home...priceless.

During the construction of the movie, the teacher I am working with asked the kids if they should be writing some of the process down. The kids just looked at the teacher with a look that said "Ah... we've got it."

Recently, I saw Gary Stager of the Thornburg Center present at NYSCATE. One of his comments has stayed with me and that was that kids come to school with a gift. The gift is their affinity for technology. We need to take advantage of that gift, use it, and nurture it to help them learn and to become life-long learners.

So, we've spent two classroom periods with them showing them some new technology. Only four students had used Pinnacle Studio before, but I left the class completely comfortable with their ability to use the software. Very few had seen this type of software, but their comfort level with technology permitted rapid assimilation of how to operate the tool. That's the gift they bring.

Now our job now is to take that, and help them through the process of building a story that is elegant, exhibits craftmanship, and is representative of who and what they are. That takes professional educators.

That's our gift to them.


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