Stories have always been an important part of my life. From a young age, I loved reading stories, listening to stories, and even writing my own stories. When I first heard the term “Digital Storytelling,” I was immediately intrigued. I confess that I initially thought it was just a term for those who read aloud picture books and posted them online. I suppose that does count in a sense, but after taking this course, I realized that the art of digital storytelling is much more than that.
As a librarian, I love telling stories, so I thought I’d try creating a digital story for my final project. I had an idea to create a story about our Learning Commons and all that we offer to our students. I was initially very excited about it. I started writing out a script, taking video, and gathering photos. And then, I tried to put it all together– and hit a wall.
Here are some of the challenges I experienced:
1) My idea just wasn’t coming together. It didn’t feel enough like a story.
2) I had so much video and so many photos to sift through that I got overwhelmed.
3) I really didn’t want to narrate my video. I hated how my voice sounded.
4) I soon realized I was iMovie illiterate. Trying to figure it out made me want to throw my Mac out the window.
I honestly considered just giving up and doing a different project. I wanted to do something easier and less stressful. But last week I was reading my students a story about overcoming fears, and I realized that I needed to overcome this one. So I went back to the drawing board and started again. As I thought about it, I realized that I had been trying to start in the middle of the story instead of at the beginning. I was trying to share all the great things happening in our Learning Commons without considering where our story had really begun.
I did finally finish my digital story. And frankly, it’s not going to win any awards. It’s a true beginner’s effort with plenty of room for improvement. I had to watch a tutorial on You Tube just to get the basics of iMovie, so my story doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles (except for one bell at the end). It’s just images, video, and my own hesitant narration. I’m insecure about sharing it, but if I want my students to take risks in creating and sharing content, I need to do the same. And as soon I learn to get along better with my new archnemisis, iMovie, I intend to try this again. I do love a good story, and there are so many more I would love to create and share.