Digital Storytelling

Thanks to Preston Primary School, East Riding, for the storytelling images in the slideshows

  • ‘A highly-motivating activity, making creative use of a range of ICT and storytelling skills. The method is quick and simple enabling children to quickly see the fruits of their work.‘ Andy Jowett - Preston Primary School, East Riding of Yorkshire 

What is it? 
Do you have a story to tell? Anybody can take part in digital storytelling activities. Create your own comics with Comic Life™ software. It offers a fun, creative and easy-to-use solution for children. Bring your stories to life through visual literacy using digital still photography then simply add captions and speech bubbles.

What do I need to get started?
Barbara Ainscough can provide all resources for an in-school workshop if requested
✓ Ideas and a storyboard
✓ A computer: laptops or ipads are an easy solution and offer great flexibility
Comic Life™ software or similar (Mac or PC)
✓ Digital still camera or handheld device such as an iPad or iTouch

How much time do I need? 
Creating the ‘comic’ could be the first stage towards making a movie. The completed comics can be used to inform filming like a ‘living storyboard’. The children have a much clearer idea about what kind and range of shots they will need to capture during filming.

✓ 30 minutes to discuss and demonstrate how different camera angles and types of shot are used to enhance film-making and visual literacy
✓ 1 hour to create a storyboard
✓ 90 minutes to act out a story-line and take good quality photographs with a variety of types of shots
✓ 90 minutes to create the comic

Download useful extras from the Resources Section.

What can I expect to achieve? 
Digital storytelling fulfils the ‘Excellence and Enjoyment’ aspect of the Primary Strategy and also the Media Studies and Art modules at GCSE. All subjects which allow opportunities for storytelling, instruction and /or explanation such as Literacy, History, Geography, DT, ICT and Art are enhanced through the use of digital storytelling. It is ideal for the teaching and learning of awkward issues in PSHE.

Impact on learning: 

✓ Storytelling and story-boarding
✓ Understand the language of film (e.g. the use of camera angles and shots)
✓ Develop process skills in planning, evaluation, problem solving and critical thinking
✓ Explore personal capabilities such as creativity, communication, negotiation, initiative, collaboration, leadership and self-motivation
✓ Develop positive habits and attitudes necessary for responsible citizenship
✓ Create original projects which can be showcased on the school’s web-site

If you are a beginner and find this task overwhelming or difficult to make time for, then an easy way to get started is to use the FlickrCC website for your images. They can be saved to your computer as jpgs quite easily using a right click. Obviously a storyboard or a planned idea is required first.
One of my favourite uses for it in the classroom is to bring alive poetry by using images to illustrate the text - see examples here

You might also like to link your projects to your school’s web-site, blog or Learning Platform
Click here to see the Comic Ideas Gallery 07976 411492 Copyright Barbara Ainscough Ltd. 2006