October 2020 Agenda—Shawnee, Kansas

Facilitating Technology Enriched Classrooms for 21st Century Learners.

Begin at 9:00am

Getting Connected



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It’s all about attitude!

Psalms 34:1 I will bless the LORD at all times: His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

There once was a woman who woke up one morning, looked in the mirror, and saw that she had only three hairs on her head. “Great,” she said, “I think I’ll braid my hair today.”

So she did and had a wonderful day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and saw that she had only two hairs on her head. “Hmm,” she said, “I guess I’ll part my hair down the middle.”

So she did and had a wonderful day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and saw that she had only one hair left on her head.

“Wow,” she said, “today I get to wear my hair in a ponytail.” So she did and had a wonderful, wonderful day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and saw that there wasn’t a single hair on her head.

“Thank God!” she exclaimed. “I was running out of things to do with my hair!”

ATTITUDE is everything! Let’s be grateful for the things God has given us, press through for the Kingdom, and of course — have a wonderful day!

Now…let’s have some technology fun!

Psalm 23

1The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
3 He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord


We are going to divide Psalm 23 to create a collaborative visual representation in Google Slides.  I have assigned each of you a verse and a slide on which to type this verse and illustrate it in any way you wish! This will be a nice introduction to digital storytelling.

Title Page: Becky

Verse 1 – Glenn

Verse 2 – Shannon

Verse 3 – Lalie

Verse 4 – Laurie

Verse 5 – Cheryl

Verse 6 – Angela

Here’s the Google Slide we will use.


1. The next workshop date is scheduled for Thursday, November 12.


Let’s take some time to reflect on last month’s TEC21 Challenges and share experiences. Share a success, a challenge you experienced or a lesson learned.


  1. Discover the value of engaging your students in a digital storytelling project.

  2. Explore digital storytelling tools and resources to use with your students.

  3. Identify a tool or resource to share with a colleague.

Digital Storytelling

Everyone has a story to tell! What’s yours?

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Literary Basis

“Digital storytelling has emerged as a fundamental, cross-curricular technique that provides structure for both sharing and understanding new information. It has become an essential way of providing information and enhancing education…by making abstract or conceptual content more understandable. In all disciplines, it offers more ways to engage students and enrich learning through the inclusion of digital media that represents, illustrates, and demonstrates. Digital storytelling brings together text, graphics, audio, and video around a chosen theme, often with a specific point of view. Bernard Robin observes that a digital story may be a personal tale, a depiction of a historical event, or simply a way to creatively impart information or provide instruction. In the classroom, they can also foster collaboration when students are able to work in groups, and enhance the student experience through a personal sense of accomplishment (Robin, 2006). The National Council of Teachers of English in 2003, challenged teachers to develop instructional strategies for students to master composing in nonprint media that could include any combination of visual art, motion (video and film), graphics, text, and sound—all of which are frequently written and read in nonlinear fashion (Porter, 2008, p. 11). Included was the process of digital storytelling, where information is conveyed in a way that is more engaging than plain text.”     Strategies for digital communication skills across disciplines: The importance of digital stories (Links to an external site.)

Common Core writing standards require writing and publishing using digital tools beginning already in Kindergarten and continuing through Grade 12.

With guidance and support from adults, explore and use a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including in collaboration with peers.
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas efficiently as well as to interact and collaborate with others.
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products in response to ongoing feedback, including new arguments or information.


What is Digital Story Telling?

  • The combining of narrative with digital content like images, sound, or video.

How is the story told?

    • movies

    • slides

    • music

What is it for?

    • instruction

    • student projects

    • reflection

    • assessment

    • fun!

Why digital?

    • sharable

    • no mess

    • won’t make it and trash it

    • teaches other skills

How to Integrate Digital Storytelling

Digital Storytelling can be integrated in any number of ways:

  • Create a virtual tour of a country or historical place.

  • Create a public service announcement on an important local or world issue.

  • Simulate an interview of a historical character.

  • Simulate a debate on an historical topic, such as the Bill of Rights.

  • Create a presentation based on images of local artifacts and architecture.

Media Resources

Rich media is the key to a good digital story. The resources below will help students find what they need.

  • Wikimedia Commons – a wiki database of Creative Commons or Public Domain images.

  • Flickr – a photo and video sharing site where most works are licensed under Creative Commons. The Advanced Search allows students to search only for Creative Commons licensed media.

  • FlickrStorm – another way to search through Flickr that provides even more results. There is an option to search for only images that have been licensed for reuse.

  • Jamendo – a music sharing site of all legal to use songs.

  • Google Advanced Image Search – setting the usage rights shows images that are labeled with a Creative Commons license

  • Library of Congress – an online catalog of thousands of prints and photos currently archived at the LOC. Most of the resources can be published without having to seek permission, and they provide terrific digital artifacts for historical stories.

  • National Archives – billions of images, videos, and digital documents can be found and integrated into projects.

Low-tech option: Paper Slide Storytelling

Using an iPad or chromebook with camera, have your student make a paper slide video to explain a process in math class, singular or plural nouns, types of communities, or the parts of a cell!  The ideas are endless!  Students can work individually, with a partner, or in a larger group! Here are directions about how to make a paper slide video! Let me show you how our 4/5 grade classroom made paper slides to describe Native American housing!


Digital Citizenship Integration

Whether students are learning in-person, remotely or in hybrid scenarios, online learning activities are a part of the education process. As educational leaders, we have the extraordinary opportunity to be a positive influence in their lives when it comes to modeling and teaching them about digital citizenship. Common Sense is a nonprofit organization dedicated to provide parents and teachers lessons and resources to teach children in grades K-12 skills and responsible behaviors to thrive in the 21st century. Below are their six core curriculum topics. Check out their website HERE.

  • Media Balance & Well-being
  • Privacy & Security
  • Digital Footprint & Identity
  • Relationships & Communication
  • Cyberbullying, Digital Drama & Hate Speech
  • News & Media Literacy

Digital Tools & Resources

Book Creator is the simple way to make your own beautiful ebooks, right on your iPad or chrome book. With over 30 million ebooks created so far, Book Creator is ideal for making all kinds of books, including children’s picturebooks, comic books, photo books, journals, textbooks and more.  Here is an example!

Adobe Spark is another FREE tool for students to use for story telling!  Check out this example!

Elevate traditional media with immersive layers of interactive magic. Novel Effect’s ground-breaking voice applications bring the stories you love to life, from the page to the screen—and beyond. This is an app that can be downloaded on your phone, and then just choose a book from a huge library and have instant background music for your books!  Let’s listen as I read The Pout-Pout Fish.

Tour Builder is a new way to show people the places you’ve visited and the experiences you had along the way using Google Earth. It lets you pick the locations right on the map, add in photos, text, and video, and then share your creation.  Here is one of my creations!

I LOVE to use Animoto!!  It is a great way to caputre the wonderful moments in the classroom, on field trips, and to promote a trip to parents!  Wonderful for personal use also!  Apply for a FREE ACCOUNT HERE!

Have you ever heard of Genius Hour? Listed below are several resources to help understand what it is all about and why some teachers have been integrating this project-based learning strategy into their classrooms. Jerrita Staehr, one of our workshop facilitators, created all of the necessary assets for TEC21 Teachers to use either for themselves during their TEC21 experience or to make copies and adapt them to use with their students. She’s broken it down into steps and provided wonderful examples and templates. Excellent work, Jerrita, and thank you for sharing this with everyone! Here’s a link to the shared Google folder with all of her resources if you are are interested: Jerrita’s Genius Hour TEC21 Style Resources.

  1. “What is Genius Hour?” (Genius Hour)
  2. How to Build Community Leaders of Today – And Tomorrow – Through Genius Hour (EdSurge, 2017)
  3. Genius Hour in Elementary School (Edutopia, 2017)
  4. Tips and Tricks to Keep Kids on Track During Genius Hour (MindShift, 2017)
  5. Inspire Drive, Creativity in the Classroom with 20-Time (20-Time in Education)
  6. 20-Time Projects in Education: 41 Projects in 4 Minutes (YouTube, 2014)


Prezi has designer templates, millions of reusable presentations, and a PowerPoint-to-Prezi converter, there’s no need to start from scratch—unless you want to.


Have you ever subscribed to the Mailbox Magazine?  It is now FREE for teachers on the Kansas State Library website!  Click here to access the library!


Student Treasures allows your students to make a book and actually publish it!!


Icivics.org for teachers has so many wonderful resources for our Social Studies curriculum!  The famous “Win the White House” game is here also! Check out their resources for the 2020 Election!


Are your students working on writing a story, or working on the concept of dialogue?  Storyboardthat.com allows students to create up to 6 free frames of a comics! They choose their own background, people, and text!  Very engaging!  Click here for my example!


ABCya Animate is a great way for kids to create their own animations! The easy interface allows kids to design custom projects by illustrating and editing animation frames. Play the animation as many times as you’d like, save and send to friends and family, or even create a flipbook!


This site is everything Google! A plethora of ideas for all ages of students!  Check out this Halloween activity with Google Docs! Wouldn’t students love creative writing using a rebus?!

Story Jumper is another resource that students can use to make books online! They can even be published in the hardback form!


Simplek12.com is a website that will host 30-minute tutorials on everything Google!  They have limited free tutorials, but if you’d like to join for a year, the possibilities are endless and on-demand! I’ve watched several of them for free, and they are good!


Gerry’s YouTube Page:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-6WUaQSC_AfKZrinPuhVFw

Sometimes we just need to take a break away from the seriousness of our day.  Have you ever seen Gerry Brooks on Facebook?  He not only has TONS of YouTube videos and posts on Facebook, he also has a website with wonderful teaching ideas! Check it out!

Lunch Hour at 11:30am/Back to Work at 12:30pm

Project Development

TEC21 Challenges

  1. Digital: Engage your students in a digital storytelling activity or project. Share your experience by posting for others to see!
  2. Social: Post a question, an answer, a resource, a picture of your students working on digital storytelling, or an example of a student project to the TEC21 Educators Group on Facebook.
  3. Spiritual: Be a resource to at least one new person on your faculty before we meet again.


To open the reflection in its own tab, select HERE.

Dismiss at 2:00pm

My Contact Info


Lori Leonardi

Trinity Lutheran School, Atchison, KS



Connected teachers inspiring students in Technology Enriched Classrooms.