Gatsby VoiceThread Project: WOW!

Posted on April 5, 2008

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My students presented their VoiceThreads in class this week. I was thoroughly impressed with their creations. Several aspects were praiseworthy:

  • The level of their analysis
  • Their choice of photos to represent symbolically the ideas about which they’re talking
  • Their effective collaboration–each member contributing to the creation of a whole product
  • Their problem-solving–as they encountered problems, they worked together to generate solutions

A few issues we need to work to improve upon include:

  • Creating stronger conclusions that connect the analysis to the overall theme. We analyzed a color, what it might symbolize, its connotations–So What? Looking at the author’s use of the color–what was his overall purpose for using the color? What point was he trying to make–about life, about the human condition?
  • Recording better voice narration–I realize I need to purchase better mics. Some of them were crackling, not a fault of the students. Some of us, though, needed to take the time to re-record when better quality was possible. Often, a simple adjustment–like moving closer to or further from the mic–can make a huge difference. I need to stress to students and give them time to play with the technology, to problem solve to get end products that make us all beam.
  • Transitioning between slides–I didn’t work on this, assuming students knew to use transition words and phrases to create flow from one slide to the next, one idea to the next. Bad assumption. The graphic organizer I created to have students plan content, didn’t include consideration of stringing ideas together with transition. Next time, I need to emphasize–during the process of creating the script–transition.

I’m thrilled with their first attempt at creating a VoiceThread. We’ll be writing reflections of the process and final product; I’ll share some of those next week.

One final problem I encountered. As I attempted to showcase some of the students’ VoiceThreads in this post by creating a link to them, I encountered the pop-up box at VoiceThread telling me I didn’t have permission to view the VoiceThread. Oops! Next week, I’ll have to have students revisit their set-up options to allow me access. So, next week, when we leap this last hurdle, I’ll share their work.

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Posted in: EdTech, Reflection