Class 6: Digital Storytelling with Sway

This week we will explore digital storytelling using a Microsoft app called Sway. We’ll be joined by UP instructional designer –  Ben Kahn.

One can think of digital storytelling as the modern extension of the ancient art of storytelling, now interwoven with digitized still and moving images and sound. Thanks to new media and digital technologies, individuals can approach storytelling from unique perspectives. Many people use elaborate non-traditional story forms, such as non-linear and interactive narratives. Source

Here’s an example of a digital story:
(much more elaborate than I expect of you …)
“Welcome to Monowi, Nebraska: population 1”

ASSIGNMENT 6: DUE TUESDAY FEB 27 | Completed work

Create a digital story including multimedia like text, images, video or audio using Sway. You are free to create whatever story you would like to tell.
(Another option: design a learning activity for students to tell a digital story using whatever software you choose.)

If you need inspiration, here’s one idea: read the poem below and create a poetic version of where you from.  In the poem George Ella Lyon tells the story of her youth in Kentucky

Where I’m From
I am from clothespins,
from Clorox and carbon-tetrachloride.
I am from the dirt under the back porch.
(Black, glistening,
it tasted like beets.)
I am from the forsythia bush
the Dutch elm
whose long-gone limbs I remember
as if they were my own.

I’m from fudge and eyeglasses,
from Imogene and Alafair.
I’m from the know-it-alls
and the pass-it-ons,
from Perk up! and Pipe down!
I’m from He restoreth my soul
with a cottonball lamb
and ten verses I can say myself.

I’m from Artemus and Billie’s Branch,
fried corn and strong coffee.
From the finger my grandfather lost
to the auger,
the eye my father shut to keep his sight.

Under my bed was a dress box
spilling old pictures,
a sift of lost faces
to drift beneath my dreams.
I am from those moments–
snapped before I budded —
leaf-fall from the family tree.

Sway Resources

There is no shortage of Sway tutorials and resources out there. Here are a few I think are particularly useful. – Ben

  • What is Sway – This is good primer. At the end of the video are several links to other videos showing how Sway might be used, so you can explore what interests you.
  • Learn Microsoft Sway – a tutorial that goes over the basics of actually using Sway and adding your content.
  • Sway User Interface Refresh – Microsoft recently updated Sway, so things are in slightly different places than you’ll see in the tutorial videos (you don’t need to watch this whole video; the portion on Sway is brief).
  • Sway for Educators – If you want to dive deeper into classroom use of Sway and use your free access this is a high-quality series of short videos (note Sway is chapter 3 in this video course).

Image source Josh Calabrese / Adobe Sway

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