Develop a “Campaign”
Educators who seek to integrate CEDS in their classes typically have a broad desire to connect students with social topics. However, setting multi-modal, tangible, achievable learning goals are imperative. A “Campaign” of digital storytelling keeps many options on the table for the teacher. Bubble charts are one way to isolate the smaller, contributing elements of broad social topics. VV used the tree image, with a specific story as a leaf on the larger tree.
Video Volunteers’ CCs produce films around particular social campaigns…each story adding a perspective and step toward change on the issue. These campaigns even have their own corresponding training manuals, describing film production techniques specific to the campaign, and are strengthened when community members have a chance to provide input on the Campaign topic. “Educators should develop community partnerships and solicit and accept community input on the desired elements and goals of service projects” (Celio, Durlak, Dymnicki 2011).
Gordon Parks High School attempted Quarterly Social Justice topics, but struggled because we weren’t as intentional and planful about these quarterly topics as we could have been. In the future, we would consider creating manuals that accompany their campaigns, and these manuals are highly specific about digital storytelling techniques that propel effective education, reflection and digital storytelling about the campaign topic. For example, if GPHS were to try a quarterly social justice topic on Green Space access in St. Paul, we would request curriculum writing funds or allocation of PLC time to create a manual centered on this particular topic. The manual would outline specific interdisciplinary activities, as well as example digital storytelling projects that accompany the unit. And again, the goal isn’t to solve the problem in a 9-week quarter, but rather to create civic engaged digital storytelling that reaches a local audience, and prompts dialogue or community empowerment on the topic.