How often do our students create marvellous pieces of digital content for it to not been seen by a wider audience, if by anyone at all? It’s really no different to them creating and completing a paper based project, work in their books, or even pieces of art work and then for that wonderful work to not be shared and highlighted amongst the greater masses.
Yesterday however, 11 of our students had the wonderful opportunity to share their digital projects at the Adobe “Have A Voice” Showcase at ACMI, Federation Square. This joint venture between Adobe and the Department of Education allowed students to create powerful, rich and provocative at times digital projects about something that the students were passionate about. And my oh my, were they passionate!
It had been pleasing as teachers to see our year 3/4 students engage with this project and work collaboratively to complete what they eventually did. In having started a BYOD iPad program this we had, and have, only really scratched the surface of what the devices are capable of, what the teachers can do and more importantly, what the students can achieve.
That there in itself is often a blocker seen in many settings where students are hampered by what they are allowed to do, restricted to do, or not given the opportunity to do, on their devices.
As part of this project, yes, there were parameters, however students were given many choices regarding the what and the how and from what I witnessed yesterday from all schools involved, students really embraced that openness and created some extremely powerful projects.
In speaking with Tim Kitchen, Adobe’s Senior Education Specialist (APAC), who initiated and led the project, I had mentioned that the opportunity for our students to be able to create these powerful projects and then to have them ‘showcased’ on the big screen was something they will certainly not forget.
On the back of this, it raised many more questions in how as a teacher and school leader I go about building upon student ownership, voice and opening up what we do on the inside of school to the outside. In effect, we do that currently through YouTube (still a work in progress), Facebook and other SM platforms. There has to be more to do it however. Digital portfolios via a blog or Google Site? There’s some thinking needed!
Via our school’s YouTube Channel I am aiming to have all students projects up and available for viewing soon. In the meantime, I have shared and linked the projects that were showcased yesterday below.
And finally, if you would like to know more about the Adobe Have A Voice Project, visit this link created by Tim Kitchen.