Storytelling is a part of what makes us human – something that sets us apart from other species on our planet (we assume!) – something that many of us enjoy sharing with others. So, what is the point of writing and sharing our stories when no one will listen?
This can be one of the greatest challenges for teachers, as some pupils do not see the point of writing, creating stories or exploring their imaginations as no-one will properly read their story. Knowing that your work is going to have an audience is a real motivator for us all when writing, and for pupils this may simply be their parents reading their work. Even more care is given when a larger audience is likely – but finding that audience can be a challenge.
In this digital age, with social media at the helm, freeing up writing is more accessible. Writing on blogs or creating e-books is all very well and good, but can prove to be very hit-and-miss in terms of assuring an audience. As social media now becoming a constant part of our daily lives, author David Mitchell is releasing his new short story via his twitter feed, which got us thinking…what a great idea for pupils to share their stories – 140 characters at a time.
How? Easy – As teacher, set up a twitter account (or two) and get your pupils to share their stories, up to 140 characters at a time. Storify them (see below), and share to the world. As the teacher in charge of this account, you can ensure security and safety, whilst giving your pupils a great motivator to write for an audience. There is no reason why young children cannot be a part of this, as many will be aware of social media thanks to their parents, older siblings and other people around them – with the option of drawings/images included within the story. Storify offers three templates for display, including story, grid or slideshow with populating and embedding the story being simple process. Here is how David Mitchell shared his story on twitter, with our simple compilation Storified….