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Tuesday
Apr152014

Tweet Me A Story

I love being inspired by the things on Education Closet!

Here is a piece I saw there recently written by Deirdre Moore:

I must admit I am not the most technologically savvy person, but I am intrigued by what technology inspires, enables and empowers people to do.  I also know it’s a great way to connect to our students and inspire them.  I have never tweeted myself, but I have recently heard of Twitter inspiring writing which drew me into the world of tweets.  Apparently there are a few literary communities harnessing the restrictions and the  connectivity of tweeting to inspire and share writing.  As I have mentioned before I have witnessed how powerful and freeing simple structure can be.  It appears that the structure of the limitation of characters in tweeting (140 to be exact) is inspiring both poets and story writers alike.  Not only can such a simple structure inspire writing but it forces careful word choice and allows only the most relevant information.  As educators we can harness the power of this form of social media to engage and challenge the writers in our classrooms.

There are poets tweeting haiku poems, known as “twaiku”, and there is Twitter poetry to be read at #poetweet.  (Please note that these tweets are not screened and not all content is child friendly!)  Such a limited number of characters seems well suited for the literary form of poetry, especially ones with an already limited structure like the haiku, but novels?

Yes, it’s true.  There are novelists and story writers using Twitter to share stories.  Mind you, they are not telling complete stories in one tweet.  However, some are limiting themselves to no more than twelve tweets, each containing no more than 140 characters, to tell an entire story.  What a wonderful way to teach brevity and economy to students, like myself, who tend to be rather verbose!

One novelist playing with Twitter to tell stories is John Wray.  He has taken a character named Citizen that was cut from one of his novels and is using that character to write an on-going story.  It’s not a novel with a story arc but rather an open-ended serial.  I checked it out and after just a few tweets I felt right at home with the character and didn’t feel that I had missed anything by just jumping in midstream.  Each tweet is crafted to stand on its own but the tweets read like a story when strung together.  Wray was quoted as saying that this way of writing a story has been fun and liberating for him.  Our students just might agree.

The art of writing can be a difficult one to teach and inspiration is a finicky thing.  When we discover something that can help inspire our students to write or explore a certain facet of writing, I believe it’s worth checking out.  So if you are looking for new ways to inspire and facilitate the sharing of writing in your classes, challenge your students to tweet you a story!

Deirdre Moore is a regular contributor (every Wednesday) on EducationCloset.com. She is a teaching artist and AI coach in the San Diego public schools dedicated to helping classroom teachers make arts an integral part of their teaching. Deirdre has an MEd in Arts Integration and over twenty years of classroom and performing arts teaching experience. 

 

Friday
Apr112014

What did I find this week?

 

Do you feel like that story could have been written about you this week?

 

Here are a couple of sites I found this week and wanted to share:

  • My Monday was full of rain! So I decided to search some of my favorite resource sites for the term “rain” and that resulted in a few days worth of posts! ( post on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday). Here is one of the ones I found that I think could make am interesting STEAM activity: 

  • Does Build an Art Machine sound more like your thing? I can also see ways this could be used to jumpstart a STEAM project to lead to more learning!(searching for “rain” this week probably led me to this discovery too, but I don’t really remember … that just goes to show that you should always be on the lookout for interesting things since you never know what you might find that you aren’t even looking for)

 

 

What did you find this week?

I can’t wait to go see!

 

 

Thursday
Apr102014

What do you want to inspire?

After a conversation today, here is what I created:


This image can be found on my flickr account

Wednesday
Apr092014

Is it raining in Storybird?

In continuing my rain journey this week, I decided to search StoryBird for “rain” and was quite pleased with the results!

Here are a few of my favorites: 

 and 

and

 

I also found these two stories that use the same illustrations but take them in different ways …

I enjoyed looking at the ways these ideas were expressed. Although Storybird is probably used more for stories that would fall into the fiction category, non-fiction/informational texts can also be created … as well as poems and all sorts of other things!

When I logged in this morning, I got the option to choose an educator or personal account. After choosing the educator account, there is an area to add or invite students and even make assignments.

I can’t wait to explore this great site for digital storytelling more …

Did I mention that you can look at the gallery too?

I have a feeling I might have to spend time there too!

 

 

Tuesday
Apr082014

Is it raining resources again?

Even though it is not raining outside today, I decided to continue what I started yesterday …

So I did a search for “rain” on another of my favorite resource sites, netTrekker search:

 

One of things I enjoy about using netTrekker is that I only have to do one search but get results from many resources … especially the ones I would never have thought to search!

The next thing I want to do is learn more about the portfolio feature in netTrekker so I can group all of these resources together …

image source