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Transmedia Uses Tech to Change Storytelling

Transmedia Uses Tech to Change Storytelling | immersive media | Scoop.it

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The Digital Rocking Chair's curator insight, October 19, 2013 3:22 AM


Elisabeth Greenbaum Kasson:  "Recently, [Jay] Bushman sat down with Dice News to talk about what it’s like to tell a complex, multi-character story across platforms, and why Twitter may be the way to a viewer’s heart."

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Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Disciplinary Literacy in Michigan
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Old and New: Primary Sources in the 21st Century - ClassTechTips

Old and New: Primary Sources in the 21st Century - ClassTechTips | immersive media | Scoop.it

"I’ve shared some of my favorite apps for studying the American Revolution and industrialization.  National Archives DocsTeach and Today’s Document are two great apps for exploring American history in your classroom.  Search by topic or check daily for high quality images with detailed information on a variety of subjects."


Via John Evans, Lynnette Van Dyke
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Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from An Eye on New Media
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New Teachers: Resource Roundup

New Teachers: Resource Roundup | immersive media | Scoop.it
From classroom management to working with parents, lesson planning to learning environments, this compilation of blogs, videos, and other resources provides an array of tips and advice for teachers just starting out.

Via Ken Morrison
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Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Tracking Transmedia
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Smile, You’re Speaking Emoji: The Rapid Evolution of a Wordless Tongue

Smile, You’re Speaking Emoji: The Rapid Evolution of a Wordless Tongue | immersive media | Scoop.it
Are words on the way out?

Via siobhan-o-flynn
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Jeni Mawter's curator insight, November 23, 6:29 PM

The new universal language.

Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Tracking Transmedia
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The Harry Potter Alliance’s #MyHungerGames Brings Awareness to Stories of Income Inequality

The Harry Potter Alliance’s #MyHungerGames Brings Awareness to Stories of Income Inequality | immersive media | Scoop.it
The Harry Potter Alliance organizes Hunger Games hashtag.

Via siobhan-o-flynn
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Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from New Web 2.0 tools for education
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OneNote for Teachers - Interactive Guides

OneNote for Teachers - Interactive Guides | immersive media | Scoop.it
Dynamics NAV Test Drive

Via Kathleen Cercone
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Raquel Prado Marçal's curator insight, November 18, 10:09 AM

OneNote can be used online as OneDrive, and it's free for all computer systems. Users can add, share, and edit notes on different topics.

Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Just Story It Biz Storytelling
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Data Storytelling: A Fab Technique For Presentations

We often hear that a presentation needs a good story. But the tricky part is to get your story to be clear and concise. So how can you avoid beating around the…

Via Karen Dietz
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Karen Dietz's curator insight, November 18, 1:21 PM

Article Link: http://slidesha.re/1zAfVpn 


Got data? Want it to be memorable, sharable, and inspire action? Then grab this how-to guide for sharing a research report as a story.


I really like what the author has done here. This is a SlideShare with only 18 slides. But the example shared works perfectly. After viewing this piece you will definitely be able to storify any data you need to share.


Story on!


This review was written by Karen Dietz for her curated content on business storytelling at www.scoop.it/t/just-story-it 

Djebar Hammouche's curator insight, November 19, 2:15 AM
Data Storytelling: A Fab Technique For Presentations
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Prezentt - Share your slides & content seamlessly

Prezentt - Share your slides & content seamlessly | immersive media | Scoop.it

Prezentt is a web app that helps presenters to get a 1000% better interaction with their audience through a range of tools. Share your slides with your audience immediately, track questions and follow ups, save time and get much greater audience engagement.


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Roberta Bano's curator insight, November 17, 6:07 AM

beautiful presentations, also interactive

Benjamin Labarthe-Piol's curator insight, November 21, 10:31 AM

Useful

Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Transmedia: Storytelling for the Digital Age
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4 Storytelling Tips From The Co-Creator Of Blockbuster Mystery Podcast "Serial"

4 Storytelling Tips From The Co-Creator Of Blockbuster Mystery Podcast "Serial" | immersive media | Scoop.it

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The Digital Rocking Chair's curator insight, November 14, 4:03 PM


Joe Berkowitz:  "Julie Snyder is the senior producer and co-creator of the hit podcast Serial. Here, she offers some guidelines for telling a story the Serial way."

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Teaching With YouTube

Teaching With YouTube | immersive media | Scoop.it
9 Tips For Smarter Teaching With YouTube

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
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camille's curator insight, November 15, 7:49 AM

TICE

John Rudkin's curator insight, November 17, 3:52 PM

But Mediacore is even more brilliant!

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The Baloney Detection Kit: Carl Sagan’s Rules for Bullshit-Busting and Critical Thinking

The Baloney Detection Kit: Carl Sagan’s Rules for Bullshit-Busting and Critical Thinking | immersive media | Scoop.it
Carl Sagan was many things — a cosmic sage, voracious reader, hopeless romantic, and brilliant philosopher. But above all, he endures as our era’s greatest patron saint of reason and common sense, a master of the vital balance between skepticism and openness. In The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark (public library) — the same indispensable volume that gave us Sagan’s timeless meditation on science and spirituality, published mere months before his death in 1996 — Sagan shares his secret to upholding the rites of reason, even in the face of society’s most shameless untruths and outrageous propaganda.

In a chapter titled “The Fine Art of Baloney Detection,” Sagan reflects on the many types of deception to which we’re susceptible — from psychics to religious zealotry to paid product endorsements by scientists, which he held in especially low regard, noting that they “betray contempt for the intelligence of their customers” and “introduce an insidious corruption of popular attitudes about scientific objectivity.” (Cue in PBS’s Joe Hanson on how to read science news.) But rather than preaching from the ivory tower of self-righteousness, Sagan approaches the subject from the most vulnerable of places — having just lost both of his parents, he reflects on the all too human allure of promises of supernatural reunions in the afterlife, reminding us that falling for such fictions doesn’t make us stupid or bad people, but simply means that we need to equip ourselves with the right tools against them.



Through their training, scientists are equipped with what Sagan calls a “baloney detection kit” — a set of cognitive tools and techniques that fortify the mind against penetration by falsehoods:

The kit is brought out as a matter of course whenever new ideas are offered for consideration. If the new idea survives examination by the tools in our kit, we grant it warm, although tentative, acceptance. If you’re so inclined, if you don’t want to buy baloney even when it’s reassuring to do so, there are precautions that can be taken; there’s a tried-and-true, consumer-tested method.

But the kit, Sagan argues, isn’t merely a tool of science — rather, it contains invaluable tools of healthy skepticism that apply just as elegantly, and just as necessarily, to everyday life. By adopting the kit, we can all shield ourselves against clueless guile and deliberate manipulation. Sagan shares nine of these tools:

Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the “facts.”
Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.
Arguments from authority carry little weight — “authorities” have made mistakes in the past. They will do so again in the future. Perhaps a better way to say it is that in science there are no authorities; at most, there are experts.
Spin more than one hypothesis. If there’s something to be explained, think of all the different ways in which it could be explained. Then think of tests by which you might systematically disprove each of the alternatives. What survives, the hypothesis that resists disproof in this Darwinian selection among “multiple working hypotheses,” has a much better chance of being the right answer than if you had simply run with the first idea that caught your fancy.
Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it’s yours. It’s only a way station in the pursuit of knowledge. Ask yourself why you like the idea. Compare it fairly with the alternatives. See if you can find reasons for rejecting it. If you don’t, others will.
Quantify. If whatever it is you’re explaining has some measure, some numerical quantity attached to it, you’ll be much better able to discriminate among competing hypotheses. What is vague and qualitative is open to many explanations. Of course there are truths to be sought in the many qualitative issues we are obliged to confront, but finding them is more challenging.
If there’s a chain of argument, every link in the chain must work (including the premise) — not just most of them.
Occam’s Razor. This convenient rule-of-thumb urges us when faced with two hypotheses that explain the data equally well to choose the simpler.
Always ask whether the hypothesis can be, at least in principle, falsified. Propositions that are untestable, unfalsifiable are not worth much. Consider the grand idea that our Universe and everything in it is just an elementary particle — an electron, say — in a much bigger Cosmos. But if we can never acquire information from outside our Universe, is not the idea incapable of disproof? You must be able to check assertions out. Inveterate skeptics must be given the chance to follow your reasoning, to duplicate your experiments and see if they get the same result.


Just as important as learning these helpful tools, however, is unlearning and avoiding the most common pitfalls of common sense. Reminding us of where society is most vulnerable to those, Sagan writes:

In addition to teaching us what to do when evaluating a claim to knowledge, any good baloney detection kit must also teach us what not to do. It helps us recognize the most common and perilous fallacies of logic and rhetoric. Many good examples can be found in religion and politics, because their practitioners are so often obliged to justify two contradictory propositions.

He admonishes against the twenty most common and perilous ones — many rooted in our chronic discomfort with ambiguity — with examples of each in action:

ad hominem — Latin for “to the man,” attacking the arguer and not the argument (e.g., The Reverend Dr. Smith is a known Biblical fundamentalist, so her objections to evolution need not be taken seriously)
argument from authority (e.g., President Richard Nixon should be re-elected because he has a secret plan to end the war in Southeast Asia — but because it was secret, there was no way for the electorate to evaluate it on its merits; the argument amounted to trusting him because he was President: a mistake, as it turned out)
argument from adverse consequences (e.g., A God meting out punishment and reward must exist, because if He didn’t, society would be much more lawless and dangerous — perhaps even ungovernable. Or: The defendant in a widely publicized murder trial must be found guilty; otherwise, it will be an encouragement for other men to murder their wives)
appeal to ignorance — the claim that whatever has not been proved false must be true, and vice versa (e.g., There is no compelling evidence that UFOs are not visiting the Earth; therefore UFOs exist — and there is intelligent life elsewhere in the Universe. Or: There may be seventy kazillion other worlds, but not one is known to have the moral advancement of the Earth, so we’re still central to the Universe.) This impatience with ambiguity can be criticized in the phrase: absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
special pleading, often to rescue a proposition in deep rhetorical trouble (e.g., How can a merciful God condemn future generations to torment because, against orders, one woman induced one man to eat an apple? Special plead: you don’t understand the subtle Doctrine of Free Will. Or: How can there be an equally godlike Father, Son, and Holy Ghost in the same Person? Special plead: You don’t understand the Divine Mystery of the Trinity. Or: How could God permit the followers of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam — each in their own way enjoined to heroic measures of loving kindness and compassion — to have perpetrated so much cruelty for so long? Special plead: You don’t understand Free Will again. And anyway, God moves in mysterious ways.)
begging the question, also called assuming the answer (e.g., We must institute the death penalty to discourage violent crime. But does the violent crime rate in fact fall when the death penalty is imposed? Or: The stock market fell yesterday because of a technical adjustment and profit-taking by investors — but is there any independent evidence for the causal role of “adjustment” and profit-taking; have we learned anything at all from this purported explanation?)
observational selection, also called the enumeration of favorable circumstances, or as the philosopher Francis Bacon described it, counting the hits and forgetting the misses (e.g., A state boasts of the Presidents it has produced, but is silent on its serial killers)
statistics of small numbers — a close relative of observational selection (e.g., “They say 1 out of every 5 people is Chinese. How is this possible? I know hundreds of people, and none of them is Chinese. Yours truly.” Or: “I’ve thrown three sevens in a row. Tonight I can’t lose.”)
misunderstanding of the nature of statistics (e.g., President Dwight Eisenhower expressing astonishment and alarm on discovering that fully half of all Americans have below average intelligence);
inconsistency (e.g., Prudently plan for the worst of which a potential military adversary is capable, but thriftily ignore scientific projections on environmental dangers because they’re not “proved.” Or: Attribute the declining life expectancy in the former Soviet Union to the failures of communism many years ago, but never attribute the high infant mortality rate in the United States (now highest of the major industrial nations) to the failures of capitalism. Or: Consider it reasonable for the Universe to continue to exist forever into the future, but judge absurd the possibility that it has infinite duration into the past);
non sequitur — Latin for “It doesn’t follow” (e.g., Our nation will prevail because God is great. But nearly every nation pretends this to be true; the German formulation was “Gott mit uns”). Often those falling into the non sequitur fallacy have simply failed to recognize alternative possibilities;
post hoc, ergo propter hoc — Latin for “It happened after, so it was caused by” (e.g., Jaime Cardinal Sin, Archbishop of Manila: “I know of … a 26-year-old who looks 60 because she takes [contraceptive] pills.” Or: Before women got the vote, there were no nuclear weapons)
meaningless question (e.g., What happens when an irresistible force meets an immovable object? But if there is such a thing as an irresistible force there can be no immovable objects, and vice versa)
excluded middle, or false dichotomy — considering only the two extremes in a continuum of intermediate possibilities (e.g., “Sure, take his side; my husband’s perfect; I’m always wrong.” Or: “Either you love your country or you hate it.” Or: “If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem”)
short-term vs. long-term — a subset of the excluded middle, but so important I’ve pulled it out for special attention (e.g., We can’t afford programs to feed malnourished children and educate pre-school kids. We need to urgently deal with crime on the streets. Or: Why explore space or pursue fundamental science when we have so huge a budget deficit?);
slippery slope, related to excluded middle (e.g., If we allow abortion in the first weeks of pregnancy, it will be impossible to prevent the killing of a full-term infant. Or, conversely: If the state prohibits abortion even in the ninth month, it will soon be telling us what to do with our bodies around the time of conception);
confusion of correlation and causation (e.g., A survey shows that more college graduates are homosexual than those with lesser education; therefore education makes people gay. Or: Andean earthquakes are correlated with closest approaches of the planet Uranus; therefore — despite the absence of any such correlation for the nearer, more massive planet Jupiter — the latter causes the former)
straw man — caricaturing a position to make it easier to attack (e.g., Scientists suppose that living things simply fell together by chance — a formulation that willfully ignores the central Darwinian insight, that Nature ratchets up by saving what works and discarding what doesn’t. Or — this is also a short-term/long-term fallacy — environmentalists care more for snail darters and spotted owls than they do for people)
suppressed evidence, or half-truths (e.g., An amazingly accurate and widely quoted “prophecy” of the assassination attempt on President Reagan is shown on television; but — an important detail — was it recorded before or after the event? Or: These government abuses demand revolution, even if you can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs. Yes, but is this likely to be a revolution in which far more people are killed than under the previous regime? What does the experience of other revolutions suggest? Are all revolutions against oppressive regimes desirable and in the interests of the people?)
weasel words (e.g., The separation of powers of the U.S. Constitution specifies that the United States may not conduct a war without a declaration by Congress. On the other hand, Presidents are given control of foreign policy and the conduct of wars, which are potentially powerful tools for getting themselves re-elected. Presidents of either political party may therefore be tempted to arrange wars while waving the flag and calling the wars something else — “police actions,” “armed incursions,” “protective reaction strikes,” “pacification,” “safeguarding American interests,” and a wide variety of “operations,” such as “Operation Just Cause.” Euphemisms for war are one of a broad class of reinventions of language for political purposes. Talleyrand said, “An important art of politicians is to find new names for institutions which under old names have become odious to the public”)
Sagan ends the chapter with a necessary disclaimer:

Like all tools, the baloney detection kit can be misused, applied out of context, or even employed as a rote alternative to thinking. But applied judiciously, it can make all the difference in the world — not least in evaluating our own arguments before we present them to others.

The Demon-Haunted World is a timelessly fantastic read in its entirety, timelier than ever in a great many ways amidst our present media landscape of propaganda, pseudoscience, and various commercial motives. Complement it with Sagan on science and “God”.
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How Online Journals Increase Student Communication Skills

How Online Journals Increase Student Communication Skills | immersive media | Scoop.it
For students who have difficult writing, we recommend online journals to help build reading, writing, and communication skills.

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
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Teresa MacKinnon's curator insight, November 16, 3:32 AM

#cmc skills support accessibility #claved

Sharilee Swaity's curator insight, November 17, 12:44 AM

For kids, everything is online now. So, doing a journal online makes sense. It is really important, though, that the journal is in a safe environment, and not shared with anyone but close family and friends. 

Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks
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White House now turning to girls of color | GoDanvilleRiver.com

White House now turning to girls of color | GoDanvilleRiver.com | immersive media | Scoop.it

The White House is planning to focus on improving the lives of girls and women of color, after months of complaints that they were left out of the "My Brother's Keeper" initiative for young men.

White House aides planned Wednesday to release a report on the work it has done to help minority women and girls. They also plan to meet with advocates Wednesday and create a Working Group on Challenges and Opportunities for Women and Girls of Color, an offshoot of White House Council on Women and Girls, which is chaired by White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett.

"This report serves as a reminder of steps the administration has already taken to address a number of issues prevalent to the lives of women and girls of color and call to action on what we need to continue to do to tackle these issues going forward," Jarrett said.

The gathering comes at a time when black women are in the spotlight courtesy of President Barack Obama's announcement that he would nominate a black woman, Loretta E. Lynch, to replace outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder, and midterm elections in which Mia Love of Utah became the first black female Republican elected to the House.

Melanie Campbell, president and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation who convened the Black Women's Roundtable Public Policy Network, hopes the discussion will spark a movement to help women and girls.

"This is part of the White House listening and engaging and figuring how they can continue to address issues impacting women and girls and knowing that there are unique things that affect women and girls of color," Campbell said.


Click headline to read more--


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
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Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Transmedia: Storytelling for the Digital Age
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Gabrielle Madé: "YouTube is not a one-hit business"

Gabrielle Madé: "YouTube is not a one-hit business" | immersive media | Scoop.it

Via The Digital Rocking Chair
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The Digital Rocking Chair's curator insight, November 12, 11:51 AM


mipblog:  "How to be the signal in the noise? Canadian Media Fund's media trends analyst explains all the tricks!"

David Collet's curator insight, November 12, 10:16 PM

Once again, about creating new career paths and opportunities.

 

This is something that I have noticed several years ago. Most of the new stuff is coming by way of the new media. Newspapers and Magazines are still around but not nearly as relevant.

 

The main message I get from this article is that while the medium may have changed, the message remains the same. Convince your audience of your sincerity in a niche, and you will draw the audience. Draw the audience and you will (eventually) get financial reward.

 

And as an aside, I believe it to be much more difficult to convince a diverse audience of your sincerity if it is not genuine. Because this becomes a universe of niche's, most people devoted to a particular niche can recognize a fake pretty quickly.

Aileenexa's curator insight, November 12, 11:13 PM
bdf
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Beyond Worksheets, A True Expression of Student Learning

Beyond Worksheets, A True Expression of Student Learning | immersive media | Scoop.it
Possession of facts is not learning. What is an important skill is the ability to sift through abundant information, identify what is valid and meaningful, then use it to create meaning and express it. This is why student creation is so important in the new economy of information.

Via Ken Morrison
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Ken Morrison's curator insight, November 18, 2:46 PM

Ken's Key Takeaway: 
"Far beyond filling out answers on a worksheet, these assignments allow for individual talents and personality to shine through. While it’s unlikely that you have ever heard a person say, “that worksheet changed my life,” most people have an assignment from their childhood that they remember with pride because it was meaningful to them. More often than not, that memorable assignment was one that allowed them to build and create."

Vineta Erzen's curator insight, November 21, 5:28 AM

Can a  true expression of student learnig  be discovered through worksheets snad tests?  A quote from the post I find 'expressive': '' While it’s unlikely that you have ever heard a person say, “that worksheet changed my life,” most people have an assignment from their childhood that they remember with pride because it was meaningful to them. More often than not, that memorable assignment was one that allowed them to build and create.''

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Six Instructional Design Tips for Learner Engagement by Jacqueline Bessette

Six Instructional Design Tips for Learner Engagement by Jacqueline  Bessette | immersive media | Scoop.it

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
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Tips and Tools for Involving Students in Lesson Planning and Content Delivery (EdSurge News)

Planning for a trip can be just as exciting as the vacation itself, especially when the planning is shared between family or friends. The preparation process and this kind of shared communication about your upcoming adventure starts to build excitement, even before you arrive at your destination. La

Via Kathleen Cercone
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DianneLaw's curator insight, November 19, 11:05 AM

This would be great if we had curriculum support and time to work with our kiddos. 

Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Voices in the Feminine - Digital Delights
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Leveraging for Legacy and Cultivating New Literacies - by Amy Burvall

my keynote for the "Using Technology to Make a Difference" conference in Texas. Note that the videos will not play and it is video intensive, so please feel fr…

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
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9 (Short) Storytelling Tips From A Master Of Movie Trailers

9 (Short) Storytelling Tips From A Master Of Movie Trailers | immersive media | Scoop.it
Buddha Jones co-founder John Long discusses mini-storytelling principles and the art of modern trailer making.

Via siobhan-o-flynn
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The importance of storytelling in the digital age

The importance of storytelling in the digital age | immersive media | Scoop.it

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David Hain's curator insight, November 18, 12:42 PM

"Recent psychological research revealed how people want to inhabit storyworlds because of how stories work in the brain." ~Guardian 

Kajsa Hartig's curator insight, November 18, 3:05 PM

"...return doesn’t necessarily mean pure profit, but there has to be something of value coming back to us, for example a better understanding of who our audience is"

Alexandre Michelin's curator insight, November 19, 3:28 AM

tell your story and curate 

Rescooped by Melanie Hundley from Digital Presentations in Education
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iVisualiser

iVisualiser | immersive media | Scoop.it

Use iVisualiser to create a live video feed of your document or image. Annotate freely around screen with a variety of colours and line thicknesses. You can record a video of the screen as you annotate and can even record a live commentary at the same time - this will automatically save to camera roll for playback and/or review at a later point.

iVisualiser is the perfect presentation tool for both education and industry alike. Carefully designed to be incredibly simple to use, iVisualiser is a powerful app for collaboration, still-image and live video annotation and review.


Via Baiba Svenca
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Baiba Svenca's curator insight, November 14, 2:49 PM

The new app by Alan Peat turns your iPad into a visualiser which lets you take a photo, zoom in/out, annotate on the screen, record screen action and live comments.Perfect for demonstration purposes in education.

Watch the tutorial http://vimeo.com/111339463.


Becky Roehrs's curator insight, November 14, 4:54 PM

Not free but looks awesome!

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Conducttr conference: Transmedia storytelling

Conducttr conference: Transmedia storytelling | immersive media | Scoop.it
Report from the Conductrr conferenc: a gathering of creators, technologists, academics, producers interested in transmedia storytelling...

Via Simon Staffans
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Simon Staffans's curator insight, November 14, 5:06 PM

A look at last month's Conducttr conference.

 

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Ontario School and System Leaders Edtech MOOC - constructivist MOOC

Ontario School and System Leaders Edtech MOOC - constructivist MOOC | immersive media | Scoop.it
Connecting to Learn

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
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Excellent Tools, Apps, and Tips to Create Educational Book Trailers

Excellent Tools, Apps, and Tips to Create Educational Book Trailers | immersive media | Scoop.it

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
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Story Structure for Dummies - Storyfix.com

Story Structure for Dummies - Storyfix.com | immersive media | Scoop.it
Hear this, and hear it clearly: Story does NOT trump structure. Story IS structure.

Via Gregg Morris
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Gregg Morris's curator insight, November 16, 9:00 AM

No matter where you are in the world of "story" this is one you'll want to read.

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How Technology Trends Have Influenced the Classroom

How Technology Trends Have Influenced the Classroom | immersive media | Scoop.it
Between societal changes and technological breakthroughs, it’s become abundantly clear that the human brain is transforming the way it processes and learns information. While there are many discussions about whether or not this is good or bad for us as a society, it’s definitely a change.

As educators, it’s our job to make sure that students (and adults) are learning. Part of that process isn’t only about making an engaging activity or lesson, but also realizing how the modern brain learns. Teachers all over America are faced with this challenge of keeping students engaged in the classroom when their world outside of school is one of constant engagement and stimulation. Knowing the world outside of our institutional walls is only one step in addressing modern learning styles. How to act and adjust schools today is the next step in making the classroom of today ready for tomorrow.

To do that, let’s examine which features of society (and media) have changed and then consider what we can do in education to use it as an advantage for learning.

The Increase of Interactivity

One only need to look at the gaming market to see the evolution of how our brains crave interaction. We went from Backgammon to Atari and realized that with some simple interaction, like a yellow circle eating dots, our brains could stay occupied for hours. The recent shift to touch screen and even motion-based interaction means that we now involve our whole body when interacting with games.

Classroom Outcome: We might notice that our students seem more “antsy,” but in reality, sitting still in a seat for several hours has never been ideal for learning. Research is now becoming more abundant to back that statement. Incorporating regular brain breaks or mini-activities that require kids to move every 15-30 minutes re-invigorate the brain and get them refocused in the tasks at hand.

On-Demand Living

Most of us grew up in an era of either three basic television channels or the privilege of many via paid cable. With the digital era, television and movies have seen an exponential change in how they are distributed and accessed.  You no longer have to wait for that favorite re-run of Moonlighting; today, you can just pull it up on your phone. Better yet, you can pause it on one device and then watch it on another when you choose.  If you really get hooked on a show, why wait a week when you can just binge view it?

Classroom Outcome: Flipped-teaching comes to mind when thinking of the “on-demand” model of learning. Not everyone has the time or energy for a full-fledged flipped-teaching model (not to mention at-home access for all students), but recording some lessons or concepts for later viewing, even in class, would be one way to let students have access to information when they want it. Wouldn’t it be nice if kids wanted to binge learn?

Self-Publishing the World As We See It

They ways we viewed and read the news was previously distributed to us through a filter.  Publisher, editor, advertisers, and corporations decided what we should watch and read when it came to content. In some ways, the classroom has followed a similar path. Look at the world now when it comes to news. We are all publishing to the world around us in blogs, tweets, posts and…yes…even Instagram selfies. Our brains are no longer designed to sit back and take what is given to us. We want to create and share what we see and learn too.

Classroom Outcome:  This is one area where I feel that education has excelled, but there is still room for improvement. We’ve always encouraged students to write and report on what they think or believe. As students, we learned to play the game of “know your audience” when it came to writing a paper for a certain professor. Our purpose was writing for writing’s sake. Now we no longer have to limit ourselves to one recipient. Our students have access to a global audience and don’t have to write just to please one teacher. They can write based on what they see and believe to be true.

Everything is Mobile (and Instant)

As fast as the internet took the world by storm, the mobile revolution dropped a bomb of societal change and practice. People can now have all of their media in the palm of their hand. They can connect with anyone, anywhere. While there isn’t always value to why we use our devices, having that instant access means our brains can now outsource menial facts and focus on application and creation rather than retention.

Classroom Outcome: One of the greatest challenges to the classrooms of today is mobile technology. Do we fund a 1:1 program? Allow a Bring Your Own Device policy? Won’t this just add the distraction of the outside world into a classroom? Rather than avoid or ban the use of mobile devices, some are embracing it as a way to not only engage learners, but also dig deeper into learning. This isn’t without its pitfalls, and can be quite messy, but setting expectations of use can be a powerful way to model how our kids use these in the non-school setting.  Maybe instead of whipping out their phones when at a restaurant, kids will actually sit and have a conversation with the grown-ups around them.  Of course, this is assuming the grown-ups have put down their devices too.

Embracing the Digital Brain

As we can see from these few examples, the world around us is changing.  This change affects the way we think, learn, and connect. In education, we have three options when dealing with these changes: avoid it, struggle with it, or embrace it. Technology would seem to be the panacea for solving all of these issues when it comes to engaging the digital brain. However, while it does have an impact in the classroom, the greatest impact still lies within the teacher and the content that they are trying to get their students to learn.  Until the pedagogy and purpose align with this new world, we are all left fighting a battle rather than embracing it.

Carl Hooker is the Director of Instructional Technology for Eanes ISD in Texas, an Apple Distinguished Educator, an EdTechTeacher consultant/trainer, and founder of iPadpalooza.

 

Via Ken Morrison
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