Category Archives: education

70 years ago today

“June 5 1944: The call has come at last. We are on our way to the greatest invasion ever, feeling very cool and collected. I pray to be given the strength to go through this like a man and not loose my nerve, and hope that I may return to my little family who are so dear to me.” – John Emrys Williams

John Emrys Williams

This is how my Taid (Welsh for grandfather) began his diary entry  on that dawn of the day of the Normandy Landing in WWII.

He was a signalman on board HMS Diadem and he kept a diary about his life on the ship which I’ve published and maintained online since 2001 at http://www.aberth.com/diadem/

Although Welsh was his first language, he kept the diary in English. This may be because he was taught to write in English rather than Welsh at school; or it may be that keeping notes in languages other than English during the War wasn’t allowed. I wish I’d asked him while he was still alive.

What’s been both surprising and heartwarming has been hearing from the children and grandchildren of others who worked on this ship. You can see links to their stories on the right hand side of the page.

Taid received the Russian Convoys medal from the Russian Embassy on August 14 1992. He passed away April 7 1994. He was 86 years old.

 

 

 

7 diary dates for UK digital storytellers in Jan & Feb 2014

Information Session on the new Creative Europe programme
MEDIA Antenna Wales and Media Academy Wales present an information session on the new Creative Europe programme at the University of South Wales, Atrium Cardiff Campus on Thursday 16 January 2014.

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Guardian Masterclass on video journalism and digital storytelling

Learn what it takes to create powerful and engaging video journalism – technically and editorially – from multimedia journalists who have made hundreds of short films for the Guardian.
Dates: Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 January 2014
Times: 10am-5.30pm
In London

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Social Media Exchange – Enhance your Digital Storytelling

By sounddelivery
Monday 27 January 2014 from 09:00 to 18:00 in London

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CEWN: Living Longer, Living Well

Creative Exchange Wales Network
29th January 2014. 9.30-4.30. ATRiuM Cardiff

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Digital Storytelling for Public Engagement

10:00 – 16:30 Wednesday 5 February 2014
JISC Meeting Rooms, Brettenham House, London

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Creative Citizens: the conference – Royal College of Art

London September 18-19 2014

Send your abstracts to creativecitizensproject@gmail.com by 5pm (GMT) on Monday 20th January 2014.

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Superhighways

Offers digital storytelling training for charities and social enterprises in south London. Various dates.

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There are more in Wales than you might expect, because this is where I’m based.

How to use ‘swooping’ in your storytelling

I made a presentation to Cardiff Geek Speak this month and they asked me to put my presentation online. I haven’t put the whole thing here but I have highlighted  out one section, which looks at some of the elements that make up…

A great story

 E.g. Walking with Maurice by Hanne Jones on the BBC Capture Wales website.

·         Starts with one incident and work out from that.

·         Has a clear point of view (Hanne’s was a personal take).

·         Makes you give a damn – I can’t define how to do this, but I did care for Hanne and her Granddad.

·         Has the stepping-stone-effect: when you reach the other bank you can see where you came from and how you got here.

·         Is told to be heard, not read.

·         Works well even without visuals; would be a great radio piece.

·         Is just long enough.

 

·         Plants mystery bombs (“I found my soulmate” – who is that?)

·         Explodes each mystery bomb, when it’s time (“Maurice is not just my special friend; he is also my Granddad.”)

·         Reveals surprises: “we take time to walk slowly”

 

·         Has swoops of scale: zooms the imagination out from a teardrop at the corner of an eye to a sweeping forest vista.

·         Has swoops of emotion: “cries whan he’s happy … and when he’s sad”

·         May have swoops of time: Hanne aged 5, 15, 25, in the future, and then back again.

·         Sometimes has swoops of place: the forest, the garden swing, heaven …

 

·         Etc…

Peregrine Falcon AlaS 01

Photo by Paul Sullivan.

Storybird is working on multilingual story-sharing

I was delighted to read the news in Guardian Education about “E-publishing and digital storytelling”

They say Storybird harnesses “the power of great art to stimulate creative thoughts and writing and could be used in any language”. Well, now Storybird is working on a soultion. It would be great to see, for example, Welsh-language stories being made and shared on this platform.

The Guardian also gives honourable mentions to the Book Creator app and to Puppet Pals, Sock Puppets and Strip Design where students can design and make their own comic strips.

Working with groups of more than ten people on their personal stories

Canadian digital storyteller Kent Manning contacted Barrie Stephenson and I recently with a question: “I’m conducting a digital storytelling session next month for a group of 26 educators. I value the story circle part of the process as this is the way I was taught by the folks at CDS. Would you have any suggestions for conducting story circle time with such a large group? Would you have individuals share their stories with the large group? Small group sharing perhaps?”

Here’s what I suggest:

26 is a big group. You could either split it into three and hold three storycircles or here’s a suggestion that may help.

1. Pair people up and ask each to talk for two minutes about ‘the most remarkable day of my life’. Their partner takes notes and will relate their partner’s story in the next step.

2. Bring neighboring pairs together into six or seven groups of four. The tell each other’s stories of their big day to this small group.

3. Bring neighboring quads together into three groups of eight or so people for the Love/Hate game.

4. If you want one preparatory activity with all 26 together, Gilly Adams’s Match Game is the one I suggest.

5. Back to the three groups of eight will be the best way to develop the stories each participant intends to tell.

For other Story Circle activity ideas, see also this page with seven articles about helping people to capture their story in a digital storytelling workshop.

Photo is either by Huw Davies or Carwyn Evans. I can't remember which, sorry.
Kent got back in touch afterwards to say:

“I employed a couple of the strategies you mentioned at my DS session in New York City. The group was a close knit bunch and all had very good working relationships so small group interaction as you suggest below worked the best. And then we gathered as a larger group to talk about our stories.

The teachers came prepared to the workshop with story ideas and photos, so we used the morning as a writers workshop and most folks had a working draft by noon. It was at this point we started our conversations and story circles in depth.”

If you’ve worked with larger groups and have tips or experiences to share, feel free to use Comments.

Call for Speakers: DS8 #digitalstorytelling festival in Wales

There’s a call for papers and speakers at DS8 – the 8th Annual Digital Storytelling Festival in Wales – from organisers the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling, which is part of University of Glamorgan’s Cardiff School of Creative & Cultural Industries.

Following on from the success of DS7 last year (CDS, Cowbird, Historypin), DS8 will be held at Chapter Arts in Cardiff on Friday 14th June 2013.

A wide range of attendees is expected: from practitioners to researchers; from community workers to students. Proposals are invited to present either an academic paper or to run a workshop or a break-out session.

Deadline for submissions of 300-word abstracts is Friday 29 March 2013. Please send them to Karen Lewis whose email address is klewis (at) glam.ac.uk

A gentle introduction to Creative Commons for digital storytellers

Copyright in the old days:
All of this is owned by me, contact me if you want to discuss the possibility of re-using it.

Copyright nowadays:
You can still use the above model.

Or…

You can state explicitly and irrevocably up front that you’re happy for people to re-use your intellectual property in certain stated circumstances without them having to come to ask your permission every time.

This is attractive to those making digital stories who want the world to be able to share and re-embed what they’ve made. And a knowlege of this kind of license is useful for someone who wants to include other people’s work within their own digital story.

One model that’s popular is the Creative Commons licence, which has three axes:

1. Whether or not you want a name-check (Attribution or BY) for your work
2. Whether or not you’re willing for others to alter your work, or create derivatives. Risk: someone may Photoshop someone else’s body onto that image of your child’s face you put on Flickr. Three options here:
(a) If you want your work untouched, just passed on as it is, use NoDerivs (ND)
(b) If you do decide to allow alterations as long as the new author shares it in the same way as your original work was, you add ShareAlike or SA to the label.
(c) If you don’t care what happens to the altered work, no mention need be made of this on the license label.
3. Whether or not you care about others making money for themselves out of what is yours. This part of the label says either Non-Commercial (NC) or there’s no mention of it.

So a Creative Commons license which is labelled: Attribution, No Derivatives, Non Commercial means I’m happy for you to use my work without getting in touch with me as long as you name-check me as the creator, don’t change my work and don’t make any money from its re-distribution.

A more relaxed license – used by Wikipedia – is Attribution-ShareAlike or CC BY-SA. This is the license many of those lobbying governments to open up publicly-funded data would like to see adopted by governments.

Creative Commons is most straightforward if the thing you made was entirely made by you and contains no unlicensable third-party elements. So a video diary of you speaking your own words to camera in front of a blank wall is OK to label with Creative Commons. If there was a photo by Steve McCurry in the background, or some commercial music playing and it’s no longer ‘all yours’ and it might no longer be fair to pass the right on to others to use the clip.

So, as you can see, a knowledge of Creative Commons is useful for anyone involved in a diital storytelling project.

Source:
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/ – on this site you can read more about correct attribution, various international territories, comparisons between CC and Public Domain, etc.

Disclaimer – I’m not a lawyer; please don’t take what I say as legal advice.

Just a quick post about Great British Story, HLF grants and an EdTech conference

1. The BBC Great British Story roadshow is in St Ffagan’s, Cardiff, Saturday 16 June 2012.

2. Attending will be representatives of ‘All Our Stories’. There are grants of £3,000 – £10,000 available to from Heritage Lottery Fund for UK organisations “Using collections like archives, libraries and museums, including collections held by people in the community – and – Recording things like people’s memories … scanning old photographs and documents…”
Now that sounds like an interesting source of money for digital storytelling projects. Spread the word.

3. Here’s some news of a free event in Cardiff on 26 June I heard of via Dysg’s excellent e-newsletter, mailed out every week by Rhys Davies: “Technology Working for Wales: 26 June 2012 – Free one day event, Hilton Hotel Cardiff.  JISC RSC Wales’ Summer Conference this year focuses on the twin priorities of cost efficiency and employability, and looks at how technology can help the post-16 sector in Wales to do more with less whilst enhancing the future employability of learners.”

4. FilmClub Cymru has just received a grant (select language) of just over £0.25 million from the Welsh Government to continue its educational activities in schools here in Wales.

Digital storytelling admin

I’ve just been speaking on Facebook with south Wales digital storytelling and community video practitioner Sandra Anstiss. She’s venturing into the private sector making stories with owners, marketing staff,customers etc. and she was asking members of the Facebook DS Working Group for advice about consents and copyright.
I’d say there are three or more issues here…
1. The stated consent of the storyteller and featured subjects;
2. Some form of evidence that any third-party assets are OK to use (other people’s pics, music, etc.); and
3. Something that says who owns the finished digital story entity.
Once these are established, it becomes possible to license the story’s re-publication elsewhere, either exclusively or – as in the case of Creative Commons – non-exclusively.
In terms of a project’s ethos, due consultation and consideration will need to be given to sensitivities around possible hurtful comments online etc. YouTube comments can be cruel.
I wish Sandra good luck with her new venture and – adding a disclaimer – I do emphasise I’m  not a lawyer, so it’s best to seek professional advice.
P.S. sorry for the really boring headline to this story

Center for Digital Storytelling’s Joe Lambert teaching iPhone storytelling in London 2-4 June

Joe Lambert speaking at DS5
Joe Lambert speaking at DS5 in Aberystwyth
Joe Lambert, CDS Founder and Director, is coming to Cardiff to DS7 on 7 June 2012. While he’s in the UK he’s leading an iPhone workshop in London on June 2-4. Here’s the info from CDS:

“Join CDS Founder and Director Joe Lambert on a weekend walk through the old City of London to explore your story against the backdrop of London streets. Using iPhones, iPads or iPod Touch, you will shoot, record, edit and complete a short film. See http://www.storycenter.org/iphone-workshop/ for more information. Special offer – Sliding Scale $100-$300/participant. Limit 15 participants.”

For details, email workshop@storycenter.org

This sounds like a diamond opportunity for UK Digital Storytellers to learn about using the latest mobile tools to tell a story and to get a taste of the excitement of the Capital over the weekend of the Royal Jubilee celebrations.