Tech Tools for the Everyday Teacher

Telling a story

There are so many creative ways for teachers to have students tell stories.  Story-telling has always been important because it demonstrates sequencing, allows students to transition from event to event, gives opportunity for creativity, and it can be all about the student (promotes interest).  There are a number of excellent resources for teachers to use to aid their students in telling their stories.  Four years ago I created a green screen with my 5th grade class and cooperating teacher.  We got a large wooden board from Home Depot and bright green OOPS paint.  We had the class help paint the board – so that it could act as our green screen.  We then set up the green screen in our classroom.  The students each wrote a story from their personal lives.  They then practiced presenting that story to their peers.  Last, we set up a video camera and students read their stories in front of the camera.  Pictures were brought in from home and we inserted a slideshow behind the students while they were presenting their story.  Eventually DVD’s were made for each student.  Students were engaged throughout the process and had to go through much practice and many drafts before they had a final product.  One of the resources we used when planning for this project was the following website: Website.

Another product that I was introduced to recently is called: Voicethread

Voicethread is great because…

  • It is free
  • It allows for students to tell a story and have peers comment while the story is being told.
  • Makes it easy to emphasize parts of pictures or video clips.

One idea of how I have used voicethread is: I had students create comic strips of their journey to the center of the earth.  The students had a vocabulary box full of words they had to use in their comic strip.  After students illustrated their comic strip they scanned it into voicethread and created their own commentary on their comic strip.  Other students commented on their comic strip as well.

Here is an example of a voicethread that I created.  My students did not comment on this one, but I was able to give a running commentary while the pictures were moving.


If you want to watch a different tutorial – watch this one: tutorial


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