First Reading

February 12, 2011 Leave a comment

I am currently working on a Reader’s Theater similar to the one in the first post of this blog.  Here is the first reading of three of my little stars.  They are reading the introductory information about Davy Crocket, who is the subject of the play.

First Read

for those who don’t have flash, you can hear the audio here.

Categories: digital storytelling

How people learn

February 7, 2011 Leave a comment

Since leaving management for education some years ago, I have been repeatedly faced with the concept of learning styles. The whole idea seemed a little dubious to me, especially in how that could possibly be measured. I have occasionally been faced with taking tests at professional development that ask me to answer questions on a sheet that will then tell me my learning style. the whole thing always seemed a little bit like finding my horoscope. Recently in my class I even found myself on the wrong end of a discussion after the whole class watched a scientist explain why the whole idea is incorrect in it’s very foundations. Please note that I do believe that different styles of learning and types of teaching can “engage” different learners, but that is a different conversation than explaining “how” people learn. In any case, my cousin recently sent me this article about some very official numbers that have been floating around for many years, and I thought it seemed apropos:

Will at Work Learning: People remember 10%, 20%…Oh Really?


People do NOT remember 10% of what they read, 20% of what they see, 30% of what they hear, etc. That information, and similar pronouncements are fraudulent. Moreover, general statements on the effectiveness of learning methods are not credible—learning results depend on too many variables to enable such precision. Unfortunately, this bogus information has been floating around our field for decades, crafted by many different authors and presented in many different configurations, including bastardizations of Dale’s Cone. The rest of this article offers more detail.

Categories: learning styles

A Neat Digital Story

February 5, 2011 1 comment

While searching for a digital storytelling model that I could use for creating one of my own I came across this fun reader’s theater production.  In my own classroom we’ve been doing some reader’s theater recently and the kids really enjoyed being a part of the story.  This production uses simple still images to convey the scene for the play, and the students have an opportunity to see their production. In this case originality is not the focus of the piece, as discussed by Ohler (2008) sometimes careful research can sometimes be more important than originality.

In my class we’ve also been working with using images to help us sequence a story in order to improve comprehension.  I believe allowing students to find and sequence the still images that are used for their digital readers theater would be a great way to help them push this skill one step further.  Given the time and opportunity students might even be able to create their own images,  and have them used in place of stock photos.  While this video is quite simple in scope, avoiding video and using pictures, it would be well within the capabilities of my third grade class, with guidance from the teacher.  As Ohler (2008) suggests, video can be very expensive and time consuming.


Ohler, J. B. (2008). Digital Storytelling in the Classroom. Thousand Oaks: Corwin Press

Categories: digital storytelling