Miss Peterson, an ELL teacher at Holmes elementary, became interested in Digital Storytelling (DST) after she attended an ELL Professional Development (PD) session about it in October.
After the PD, Miss Peterson sought out her Instruction Technology Coach and together they planned the technology integration into the writing curriculum. Publishing is one of the obvious outcomes of writing process when using DST and that is an accomplishment in itself. But, Miss Peterson wondered does it have to end there? When students publish a piece are they finished learning?
Miss Peterson decided to extend the learning by having students give each other feedback. She set up her WordPress blog site to post her students’ stories. During independent work time students listen to their peers’ story and respond to their peers’ productions. Miss Peterson and other teachers also gave descriptive feedback to the authors. Parents have accessed the stories and left comments for their students.
Students consider the comments they receive, self-assess where they are, and set a learning goal to improve on the next piece that they will write and publish.
I am encouraged by teachers like Miss Peterson that choose to use technology to make learning meaningful to students. I am challenged by teachers like Miss Peterson who decide not to end the learning with the technology experience. Instead, technology becomes a vehicle to extend learning, allowing students to self-analyze and set their own goals for improvement.