7 Year Olds as Digital Storytellers

Photo Credit: scragz

My wife and I are very fortunate to have such a wonderful second grade teacher for our son this year. She, Mrs. Richeson,  finds great ways to bring the parents into the classroom via technology. We have had the chance to watch our son retell stories through readers theater video podcasts. Now, she stretches their writing abilities and has them share them with everyone in audio podcasts.

During our parent conference the other day, my wife (a 6th grade language arts teacher) commented how she was not sure how Mrs. Richeson was able to do all of the things she does getting the recordings made and posted. She just smiled and said it was no big deal with the MacBook. As the instructional technologist for the district, it was a good confirmation for me that we are headed in the right direction with the right tools. I taught first grade myself. Everything extra is a big deal. To hear her share how easy she found it was affirming. 

First, a little background to my son’s story. La Cucaracha is “cockroach” in Spanish.  He has loved that Spanish word ever since he heard Phillips, Craig, and Dean in concert in Tyler.  They had a children’s CD that he wanted. Needless to say, the song about the bug is his favorite.  So, according to his teacher, Christian took a long time to write his story. She wondered what was slowing him up, but she also was glad that he was writing. A lot. It wasn’t until the end of the story being recorded that it all made sense. He was writing a story around a song with the internal goal of getting the song into the story as the closing and it make sense.  Pretty high level, if I do say so myself.  Yes, I’m proud of him.  So have a listen to his creation. Make sure you hang in there long enough to hear him sing in the end. About a roach. 🙂 

Listen to the podcast of the story “The Rock Boy” by Christian.

4 thoughts on “7 Year Olds as Digital Storytellers

  1. What an awesome post! Makes me wonder who guided and supported this teacher to learn how to create, manage and post classroom activities. Also, would things be as easy for the teachers and students to use a PC as this teacher does or would it be more time consuming, costly and difficult to do? I am still contemplating a PC versus Mac.

  2. I am basically the reason we do Macs for teachers who want to podcast. We were Windows only in 2006. I had tried thousands of dollars worth of software and hardware trying to podcast in an easy fashion (yes, I even tried Audacity). What it boiled down to for me was TIME. I had little (7th grade language arts with TAKS writing plus I was the gifted and talented coordinator). Finally, the tech director and I decided to try out a Mac and see if it was as easy as everyone said. We have been hooked ever since.

    There have been a few pieces of software out since then that might make it easier to do podcasting, but I do not see it as being as easy. I did download the trial version of Podium last week, but I have not had time to play with it yet. I think the teachers love the fact they can click once to open the program, record with a very nice quality built-in mic, add sounds and jingles with drag and drop ease, and then have it converted to an MP3 with another click or two.

    We do have an Apple podcast server now, so posting for sharing and iTunes subscription is as easy a process as making an email. They love the simplicity and time efficiency of it all. As you know, if the teachers are happy, they are going to utilize it more and continue to use it. The superintendent wants content on the web for our parents and students. This is the easiest method we have found. And the most effective.

    Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Thanks, Mathew! Having resources like your site allow me to keep going in the right direction with our staff and digital storytelling. Enjoyed your K12 Online session. You have a creative mind I could only wish to have. Keep up the great work!

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