Digital storytelling – can it be useful for ESL classes?

Had a great session (back in June) with Betty and Ourania. We compared 2 different tools for creating a digital story: powerpoint vs movie maker*.

Essentially the process is the same for both:

  1. create your idea and a short script
  2. collect photos and audio files (media)
  3. import your media into the program editing area (stage?)
  4. add effects or animation, tweak the timing, add credits etc
  5. export the movie
In favour of powerpoint: 
  • teachers and students are more likely to already know the program
  • you can add text to the screen much more easily (a mix of images and text can be useful for language learning)
  • you have more options in your animations
In favour of movie maker: 
  • you get something that looks more like a movie straight away – while in powerpoint you’ll have to manually add basic animations to images
  • it’s only one click to record audio into the movie
  • it’s easier to see how the audio matches the timing across each frame 
What can you do with these kinds of apps in your teaching and learning?

  • students can create their own movie or presentation, based around photos
  • could be based on narrative, explanation, giving instructions
  • follow-up from excursions, add voice-over to photos
  • use basic stick figure pictures to create dialogue cartoons, with student voice-over
What ideas can you think of? Share your ideas in the comment section. 
*  (both microsoft products on windows 7)

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