Digital Storytelling Institute
Two Day Agenda
June 9-10, 2008 - 8:30 AM - 5 PM

Workshop Objectives: Participants will

  1. Understand the application of digital storytelling with students and the development of communication skills
  2. Gain skills in using simple video editing tools to construct digital stories and complete a two minute digital story

Day 1 (June 3)


8:30 – 9:00 a.m.

Refreshments, Registration, Overview of Institute, Expectations and Introductions

9:00-10:00 a.m.

Dr. Barrett's slides (in GoogleDocs)

How does Digital Storytelling fit in the Curriculum? Working with students to develop communication and reflection skills through digital storytelling.
Presentation: Purposes of Digital Stories – Adding Student Voice to ePortfolios
How to Evaluate Digital Stories (Rubrics)

10:00 – 10:15 a.m.



Jigsaw Activity*

Story Circle - What is your story?



1:00-5:00 p.m.


Introduction to Tools  
Preparing your script: GoogleDocs
Preparing your images: image editing, finding images online
Preparing your narration: audio recording tutorial
Putting images and narration together: movie editor tutorial
Storing your project files

(Homework: finish script, share with Dr. Barrett, record narration, select all images)

Day 2


8:30-9:15 a.m.

Refreshments, Progress Reports

9:15 a.m.-11:30 p.m.

Finishing Your Digital Story

11:30-12:30 p.m.

Working Lunch (Rough Edit due by end of lunch break)

12:30-4:00 p.m.

More hands-on time

4:00-5:30 p.m.

Showtime! Digital Story Sharing
Wrap-up and Institute Evaluation

*Readings for Jigsaw Activity

Making a Case for Digital Storytelling By David Jakes Dec 1, 2005

Standards-Proof Your Digital Storytelling Efforts By David Jakes Mar 1, 2006

Digital Storytelling Finds Its Place in the Classroom by Tom Banaszewski  January/February 2002

Web Resources:

David Brear’s website on digital storytelling:
Educational Uses of Digital Storytelling:
Dr. Barrett’s website on digital storytelling:

Building Your Own Digital Story  – Pointers on the Process

There is a progress chart on the wall that represents the progress of each project for each step of the process below, with suggested deadlines over the next day and a half. As soon as you complete a task, “X” your progress on the chart.

I.     Script – Look at examples of specific stories on the WWW. Use the Script template, answering these questions: Who is your audience? What is your dramatic question? You may want to go over your script with a facilitator before recording your voice-overs. [Complete by beginning of Day 2.]

II.    Record Voice Narration – Refer to Sound Studio handout or workshop recording setup. Use a USB drive to transfer your audio clips to your computer. [Complete by beginning of Day 2.]

III.   Images Scanned and Sized – when searching Google images, select only the Large images – scanning from a book use 200 DPI. Import one image at a time, checking the settings in the Ken Burns effect BEFORE importing. The image will go to the shelf. To leave a copy on the shelf, hold down the Option key when dragging the image down  the timeline.  Once the project is complete, you should remove any images that still remain on the shelf (to reduce the overall size of the project folder…see ** below).

Mac users using iPhoto: You can avoid this step by importing all of the images into iPhoto, where you can select the image, set the “Ken Burns” magnification and effect before the image is placed on the timeline.

IV.   Background Music – is a good starting point. If you purchase any music from iTunes, it is protected to the computer where you downloaded it when you purchased it. You will need to burn any purchased song on a Music CD (with iTunes) and import the music directly from the CD.
Music often overwhelms voiceovers. Edit volume on the low end under your narration (> 10%) but you could increase the volume when no voice is present. (or add with Garage Band)

V.    Rough edit – Place your narration (II), sound track (IV) and images (III) on the timeline in approximate locations. Wait to apply very much of the “Ken Burns effect to images until the next step. Ask for feedback.  [Complete by end of lunch on Day 2.]

VI.   “Ken Burns,” Titles, Transitions, and Effects. Fine-tune as you have time (follow the order). Many transitions take time out of adjacent clips, so plan image durations to keep alignment with audio. Fade Out/Fade In (to/from black screen) or Wash In/Wash Out (from/to white screen) will NOT shorten your clips

VII.  Polish Edit (Ask for final feedback) [Complete by mid-afternoon break on Day 2.]

VIII. Publish: save two versions of your file (File Menu -> Share):
QuickTime -> CD-ROM (and name it your “projectname”.mov) (which can be played from the CD)
QuickTime -> WebStreaming (and name it “”) (which can be posted online).

IX.   Showtime! We will watch the “big” version of your movie. [At approximately 2:30 PM on Day 2]

X.    Back up to CD. To burn a CD, insert a blank CD into the CD drive. If asked, select “Open in Finder”. A new CD icon will appear on the desktop. Drag the files over the new CD image. When ready, drag the CD into the trash and it will begin to burn.

Burn the following onto a CD: both of these movies and a folder with all of your project source files (voice overs and original images).

Burn a second CD with just the iMovie project folder (if it is under 650 MB).

**If the folder is over 650MB, delete unnecessary files from the “shelf” and empty trash (File Menu -> Empty Trash). Select the project folder in the Finder, and select File Menu-> Get Info to determine its size. If your computer has the capability, burn the movie Project file to a DVD. It cannot be edited on the CD/DVD, but can be copied back onto a hard drive to edit further.