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Digital Storytelling Using Graded Readers and PowerPoint

Digital storytelling, a new storytelling technique using computer-based tools, is gaining popularity in Japan's college EFL classes, reflecting the trend towards social constructionism, collaborative learning, and content based learning. Through the past four-year implementation of digital storytelling at a Japanese university, the presenter has found it a powerful and fun tool to teach how to create original stories as well as retell existing narratives, like those of graded readers. On the other hand, it has also been found that the students' focus tends to be more on technology than the content they deal with. Creating a digital story would be a time-consuming and difficult task for most of them who have never used video editing software before, such as Windows Live Movie Maker.

In this paper, in an attempt to address the challenge, a digital storytelling project is reported where students were requested to create their digital stories on Microsoft PowerPoint, which most of them are familiar with. It was conducted on an EFL reading course for advanced and motivated learners at a national university in Japan. The primary aim of the project is to direct learners' attention to the story structure while developing their reading/oral fluency through extensive reading and digital storytelling. The students worked in groups to analyze the books they chose in terms of plot structure and characters, and to create digital stories of the books based on the analysis using PowerPoint. The presenter first explains the background and the outline of the project, and after showing some of the digital stories created by the students, discusses the results and the effectiveness of this project based on the questionnaire survey.

Author(s):

Kazumichi Enokida    
The Institute for Foreign Language Research and Education
Hiroshima University
Japan

Kazumichi Enokida is an associate professor at the Institute for Foreign Language Research and Education, Hiroshima University. He received his M.A. in English from Hiroshima University. He is interested in English education using CALL and ICT, and has been working on projects involving WBT and podcasting.

 

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