Digital Storytelling

Digital storytelling essentially is the practice of telling stories using computers and related tools. Not only does this give students practice incorporating multimedia within the curriculum, it also provides the opportunity for a much larger audience.

The Digital Narrative - media to support digital storytelling, ideas for storytelling, resources & links

Digital Storytelling Workshop - Includes handouts, quick starts, image and sound resources, tool list, examples, and online resources
The Digital Narrative - Tell Your Story - Includes teaching tips on digital storytelling, ideas for various tools, examples.''
Digital Storytelling in Plain English

Digital Storytelling Resources - Comprehensive site describing many tools that can be used, how to use YouTube videos for Create-Your-Own-Adventure stories, creating e-books and podcasts, creating comics online, creating stories on Google Maps, and examples of student-created video projects.

Seven Elements for planning the story and script

from Eight Tips for Telling your Story Digitally

  1. Tell the story from one person's point of view. This will help create focus - what to include & leave out. Ask yourself what your main message is, why it's important to tell, and who your audience will be.
  2. Use a dramatic question to draw your audience in immediately at the beginning and keep them hooked until the conclusion. This question/statement should cause the audience to think and perhaps ask themselves a question.
  3. Include emotional content (i.e. loss, redemption, crisis, change). This helps draw in the audience and creates a universal story to which people can relate.
  4. Voice choice can have a powerful influencer over content. It is often best to use a more conversational tone that is natural and comfortable.
  5. Soundtrack/Music choices can help establish mood and reinforce your message. Instrumental is often best, as it is less distracting. Keep volume low so as to not drown out the narration.
  6. Keep your script brief - between 250-350 words. This helps really cut out the extraneous stuff and focus on language that is central to telling the story. It also helps keep the story short and emotionally compelling.
  7. Watch the pacing - not too slow or fast. Vary length of time images are on the screen, use zoom & pan transitions.

by Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano


Using Animoto: Type your words into different slides in PowerPoint - not too many per slide! Save each slide as an image and import into Animoto. Add photos and fitting music. see directions and illustrations
  • Another Animoto idea is here and focuses on economy of words. Recommends using Picnik or Splashup to create your word jpeg files, or you can use Animoto's text tools (although more limited)
Blogging: Use as a diary style writing or have the students post a section of the story each week, with others invited to provide feedback. Read more here:

Storytelling Tools

VoiceThread - see some ideas
Myths & Legends
ArtisanCam - great for primary students. Create a tiny, foldable book.
Little Story Maker app for iPad - Free app that includes book templates you complete with your own images, text, and voice narration.
Book Creator ($4.99) - iPad app create books using own video, audio, images, text, recorded narration
Story Wheel (free or $2.99) - iPad app. Spin the wheel. When it lands on an image, record a story inspired by that image. App creates an animated story from your narration.
Storyjumper - Beautiful online (free) story book creator for elementary students. Can include your face in the illustrations.
Storybird - Collaborative storytelling online free story book creator. Class features. Can save and publish stories. Beautiful illustrations. Tutorial
My Storymaker - Choose characters & props and have the free site create the story for you. Elementary.
Wikis, such as wikispaces and PBWorks
Blog tools such as Edmoto, Edublogs, or KidBlogs, or Class Blogmeister