Autumn Memory

This past Thanksgiving break was one of the most relaxing, peaceful, and downright memorable holidays I’ve had in a long time. Among the highlights of the break were homemade cranberry sauce, Thanksgiving Skype session with relatives in South Carolina, crepes for brunch, driving around Chicago with my brother while car shopping in the rain, and raking the yard with my kids (who are both old enough now to enjoy the raking and the jumping in the leaf pile).

As I reflected on this Thanksgiving break while sitting in front of the fire Sunday afternoon after saying good bye and well wishes to the last of our holidays visitors, I couldn’t help but feel the need to make another “Speed up Your Work Day” video assignment for ds106…only with a bit of a twist towards the end.

While my two previous submissions for this assignment focused strictly on speeding up my work day in an attempt to tell a particularly mundane story about a part of my day, I wanted to capture that small part of the tedious task of raking leaves which almost all of us have fond memories of; the jumping into and crunching of the leaf pile when finished. I know my visual stories are rather simplistic, domestic, and typically a bit saccharine compared to the deeper and more thought provoking fare that comes across the ds106 airwaves, but there’s something just as exciting (for me at least) in seeing my children enjoy the same “Americana” and fall traditions that I enjoyed as a child.

What would happen if you were to ask your students to capture 30 minutes of video over the upcoming Holiday break at the end of December, and ask them to try to tell a story with it using just music and changing the speed of the video? What if you challenged yourself to try and tell your own story using video and audio? Look at it as an assignment of anticipation and reflection, a way to share and celebrate the simple tasks that we accomplish everyday, yet take up so much of our time.


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