Quote of the Month

When love and skill work together, expect a miracle. John Ruskin

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Digital Storytelling Using Narrable

This past Saturday a member of my Twitter PLN, Donna Baumbach, former edtech/edmedia professor at the University of Central Florida in Orlando and the co-creator of WebTools4U2Use, sent out a tweet about a recent post by Kathy Schrock, Educational Technologist, DEN Guru, Adobe Education Leader, a Google Certified Teacher, a Sony Education Ambassador, and a Discovery Education STAR.   This post on her site, Kathy Schrock's Katch of the Month, Web-ulous Tools, showcased five of her current favorite web based tools.  One of them used for digital storytelling looked interesting.

In the about section at the site it states:

Narrable is a storytelling platform for the images and voices that matter.  We believe that storytelling is at the core of human behavior, relationships and understanding.

Narrable is designed with educators in mind.  They state that:

  • Storytelling with Narrable draws out higher order thinking skills
  • Use Narrable to ignite natural creativity and engage your students and
  • Belonging to the Narrable Community means experiencing support that makes sense.
A phone number is posted inviting personal contact.  In the Terms it is requested that you be 18 years of age to use this service or at least 14 years old with parental/guardian consent.

When you access the home page you can sign in, sign up or get support. At the support page you can search for answers by keyword or browse by topic.  To sign up I selected the red button.  I was taken to an educational pricing page.  For an individual teacher it is free.  Two other options are listed, classroom and site license.

You can sign up using your Facebook, Yahoo! or Google accounts.  I elected to use my email.  You use the same screen for signing in and signing up.  As you can see the student login is separate.  They use a username and password.  After giving your name, email address and a password, you are asked to check you have read the terms of service and privacy policy.

A confirmation email with a link will be sent to you immediately.  The next window opened is your profile page.  In the upper right-hand corner you can go to the support page or begin to create.  On the left-hand side your choices are to change your profile picture, view your Narrables, alter your account information, review the pricing plans (as a teacher you have unlimited solo Narrables as opposed to an individual who has five free Narrables), view your statements if you have one of the paid accounts and sign out. 

When you click on create in the upper right-hand corner, a new screen opens.  You begin by uploading images from your computer or browsing your Facebook account.  Multiple images can be uploaded.  Image order cannot be changed but images can by deleted by mousing over and choosing the x.

You can have fifty letters in your title.  Any photograph can be dragged down to be the title slide.  After you have uploaded all the images you desire for your story click on save.

At the next window you can manage your Narrable (select privacy settings, to collaborate you need to upgrade), invite (upgrade necessary) or share on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest, via email or by using an HTML code to embed it.  By clicking on the tiny icon in the upper right-hand corner you are able to change your title, reposition the image or delete the Narrable.  

To add audio to your images click on the blue arrow to scroll through your Narrable.  As people go through your Narrable they can hear what you have to say by clicking on the picture.  In the upper right-hand corner of each image you can edit the image and add audio by selecting the appropriate icons.  Once added audio can be deleted if you happen to change your mind.  At any time you can click on the plus sign at the bottom of the page to add photographs.

This is the image which appears when you click on record audio.

Here is the Narrable I made to test out this online application.

I can certainly understand why Kathy Schrock has chosen this as one of her five favorites.  This site is easy to navigate, uploading of images is fantastic and adding audio couldn't be easier. I highly recommend this application, Narrable, for digital storytelling.

It could be used to demonstrate a step by step process.  To document a day, week, month or year in the classroom, this would be perfect.  It could be used to give mini-booktalks on books grouped by theme, genre or to introduce a unit of study like the Mock Caldecott.   

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