Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Digital storytelling: the latest fad or somethig more powerful?

Ok, so what is digital storytelling? Is it just the latest fad or does it have staying power? Let's take a look at what it's all about.

EDUCAUSE say digital storytelling is about combining narrative with digital content to create a movie... "They can be instructional, persuasive, historical or reflective". Digital storytelling allows people to tell true or fictional stories using a range of tools and content such as animation, photos, video, voice and sound. Making them allows people to reflect on their experiences and share their beliefs and values. As a learning/sharing tool, this allows people to develop communication and language skills while creatively combining narrative and images to tell a story. In library speak we call this building multiple literacies! Some tools you can use to create digital stories.

In libraries we can use digital storytelling as a way to communicate with clients in a new way. For example, we can promote an event using digital storytelling. Imagine using a little animation to promote children's storytime! We can also run workshops to help clients (young and old) use these tools and create their own digital stories. A great example of how this could work is the tool Voicethread, which allows people to add voiceover to photos/slides. For example, you could upload selected photos from a local history collection and invite people to share their stories about the place/people in the photo. This could be a great way to engage your community and create cross-cultural, inter-generational learning! There are so many other ways you could use this tool and all the others to create meaningful stories. It's up to you and your community to experiment and play with them to find their true potential!

~ Sophie

Sophie McDonald is an ALIA Sydney committee member and tweets @misssophiemac

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