Digital Artifacts

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Personal Narrative & Digital Storytelling

I just finished the article titled "Enter Here: Personal Narrative and Digital Storytelling" and, as a teacher in an urban district, I found it amazing and also slightly idealistic. I would love to allow my students to create a similar project. They need to have more pride in where they have been and where they plan to go. However, like the school mentioned in the article, technology is not one of our strong points. We share laptops that are rarely useful. This article is enlightening because it shows that amazing and creative things can be done despite socio economic status and location. I loved it!
I started Ch 4 the other day and I am going to finish it tonight after Kelly's blog. Fanfiction, etc. has always intimidated me probably due to my lack of knowledge. Hopefully this chapter will help and maybe I can use it to bring more technology into my classroom and lessons.


Blogger Theresa said...

I felt the same way when I read this article. I thought how wonderful it would be. Then I thought about the reality and the obstacles we face where I teach. I also teach in an urban area, where internet access is only in the computer lab, and the students are only allowed there once a week, and many computers are rarley working. So I have invested in a lot of software that we use in the classroom. However, I do know how frustrating it is to be a teacher and not have things available to your students that you feel would benefit and ehance their educational experience!!

October 14, 2007 at 7:43 PM  
Blogger Rachel J said...

Hi Lauren! I agree with your comments and also am faced with the challenge of access and reliability when it comes to technology---even though I work in a suburban district. In fact, even though I have 4 computers in my classroom and the ability to check out laptops for my students, often the network is down!! In addition, I have some parents who refused to sign the internet waiver which means that I am not allowed to let them use the internet at all!!! It seems like although this would be an incredible way to allow our students to express themselves, the day-to-day classroom environment is not yet up for the challenge!

October 14, 2007 at 8:24 PM  
Blogger Colin and/or Michele said...

Perhps one of the things we should also be doing is to brainstorm ways of addressing challenges you each face in your current teaching or potential teaching contexts. One way I've found of addressing parents who won't sign consent forms, for example, is to hold a special night (or build it into a conventional parents meeting night) early in the school year and present project ideas to do with the internet etc. in such a way as to make it absolutely compelling for parents to sign the forms for their kids. Other schools require parents to sign forms only if they *don't* want their children participating online.

Perhaps there are options for classrooms/schools to partner up with local high schools, colleges for free, or close to free, tech support and maintenance.

It might be possible to approach local businesses and ask for their superceded computers once they -- that way the business can write the computers off as donations, and your school gets good quality computers free.

October 15, 2007 at 11:28 AM  
Blogger Erin said...

Following along with Michelle's idea of an evening for parents, my school holds family nights (Once a week for six weeks in the fall and then another six nights in the spring) in which the parents and their children come in to participate in computer based activities. Many of my students do not have computers at home so it gives them a chance to show off what they know. Many parents come in intimidated to use them but since we are all working together they quickly warm up to the computers.

October 15, 2007 at 7:54 PM  

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