After looking through Educational Uses for Digital Storytelling, I felt like using this in a grade 1 class would be impossible. Most of the videos I found were done by older students and teachers.
The Educause Learning Initiative also talks about college level tasks using digital storytelling. My students don’t know how to search for a photo let alone credit one. The skills they discussed are skills that made me think “When would I possibly have the time to learn how to do some of this myself?”
My initial thought was to have my students use digital storytelling as reflection tool. I would have them tell a story about their grade 1 adventure. The more I read and thought about the implementation of this, the more I thought IMPOSSIBLE!
Then a thought came to me.
Why does it have to look exactly like these? I adapt activities all the time so why not adapt this too?
My class uses Seesaw. One of the items students can add is a drawing. While they are drawing, they can record their voice and tell about their picture. They could also choose to upload a photo they have taken, draw on it, and record their voice. Considering the skills my students have on an iPad, I think this is a good starting point. They can use this format for many different things. Most of my students do not use this tool so it will take some lessons and encouraging to get them familiar with it.
For me, the biggest take away is that students need many ways to express their thinking. My students are a perfect example of why. I have a student who has difficulty working independently so it is sometimes difficult to know what he understands. We went on a field trip to KidZania. The children get to role play and be many community workers in this pretend city. When we got back from the trip, I had my students reflect on the community workers they got to experience. I allowed them to do this in Seesaw if they wanted to. This particular child chose to draw a picture and then record his voice explaining his favorite thing at KidZania. Had this been a writing/drawing only assignment, I would never have learned how much he loved the firefighters.