For Your Consideration…a Funky Twilight Zone Ringtone

May 31, 2013 by

I haven’t blogged about anything music-related since November of 2012. That’s criminal. Especially considering the last one was a lazy post with several different examples of teachers parodying Rebecca Black’s “Friday”. No I will not link to it, you can go search for it if you like. I’m going to pretend as though I never hit the “publish” button on that post. I feel as though I may have made up for it with this post; a special assignment from deep within the DS106 Audio Archives entitled “Make Your Own Ringtone“. Considering this is the summer of the DS106Zone, I decided to add a Twilight Zone twist to this audio assignment, creating a funky fresh, beat-heavy ringtone based on the iconic opening bar of the Twilight Zone theme song. It’s guaranteed to grate on your ears like a piece of broken chalk down a slate chalkboard. You can hop over to SoundCloud and...

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Multitask This!

Jun 27, 2012 by

Kid these days… They can text rings around us adults, figure out the most complex of technical devices, and multitask so fast that keyboards are in danger of spontaneous combustion from all the furious clicking of keys, right? Wrong! I have yet to see any students exhibit on a mass scale the skills and innate abilities that those labeled “digital natives” are supposed to have (note, I never used the term digital native, I thought it was bogus from the start). The truth of the matter is, some students are more apt to be able to figure out complicated software, dart in and out of multiple windows, but no more so than the number of students who excel at football, complex differentials, or playing the guitar. I’m not saying that students can’t adapt, but rather the myths of multi-tasking (aka acquired inattention) need to be laid to rest, and replaced...

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Audio, the Red-Headed Step Child of Digital Storytelling?

Feb 29, 2012 by

Of all the various ways one could weave a digital story, I’ve noticed that audio seems to be the least favorite medium of both educators and students. Video is by far the king of the digital storytelling spectrum, followed very closely by still images and text based stories. Podcasting has been around for awhile now, and while many may point to that as audio having a strong showing when it comes to digital storytelling, the majority of those podcasts seem to be radio-style narratives. What I refer to as a “red-headed step child” are often the much more complex audio only pieces that rely on sound effects, layering, and other manipulative audio techniques that require story tellers to assemble and work with a medium and skills that most likely they’ve never worked with before. For example, the Sound Effects Story Assignment on ds106 asks learners to assemble a story using only...

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The “Big Questions”

Jul 12, 2011 by

As a part of ds106 (the best digital storytelling class ever, guaranteed to blow your mind), I recently had the pleasure to converse with @alanliddell, @shannotate, and @cherylcolan. We each posed one “big question” related to the course, and then proceeded to dissect it in every way possible for close to an hour. Topics covered include the purpose and value of community, the future of media, the role of media and pop culture in education, and using threats and ultimatums to get what you want. Although I’m thoroughly well mannered through the entire podcast, I do toss out a couple of big bombshells that might surprise some. For instance, I’m ok if students aren’t writing to express themselves as long as they can still think and react critically through various forms of media. Summer Camp of Oblivion – “The Big Questions” by techsavvyed If you’re confused as to why we’re sitting around a campfire, and who...

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Kittens! Kittens! Kittens!

Jul 5, 2011 by

Kittens, Kittens, Kittens by techsavvyed Exploring the most excellent tool that is SoundCloud while on another ds106 assignment, my wife became excited about the “over dramatic reading” activity. I had checked out a rather cute children’s book titled Kittens! Kittens! Kittens! last week, and she had just finished reading it to our toddler, we thought it would be humorous if she read it with a serious and commanding tone. Turns out, it was a rather interesting experience, and helps prove that often it’s not the story that matters, but it’s the delivery that makes or breaks a story. It would be interesting to use SoundCloud to have students record their own reading using a tone that is discordant with the original intent of the author. It would certainly be a great way to demonstrate how important voice, tone, and mood are to a story, and give your students a...

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