These are frequently asked questions (FAQs) and answers about Storychasers and our digital storytelling workshops.
Q: What is the mission of Story Chasers Inc.?
A: Storychasers provides workshops and moderated, online learning communities empowering learners to become digital witnesses, archiving local oral history and sharing that history safely on the global stage of the Internet. Learn more about us by viewing sample videos created by past workshop participants!
Digital Storytelling Workshops
Q: What kinds of digital storytelling workshops does Storychasers offer?
A: Currently Storychasers offers four different iPad-based digital storytelling workshops. These focus on creating narrated slideshows/screencasts, “quick-edit” videos, and more sophisticated digital stories comparable to those created with laptop/desktop video editing software programs. We also offer a workshop helping teachers start a student journalism club / Storychasers club as an after-school activity.
Attend a workshop
Q: Who can attend a Storychasers workshop and what is the process to register?
A: Anyone can attend one of our 2 day digital storytelling workshops, although they are designed specifically for K-20 educators. If you are interested in digital storytelling and oral history, you’ll love the opportunity to learn how to create short videos combining different kinds od media including still images, recorded audio narration, and music with free software tools. To attend a workshop:
- Your school or organization can contract with us to provide a workshop on-site for you.
- You can register online via EventBrite and pay to attend one of our scheduled, public workshops.
Join a Learning Community
Q: Who can join Storychasers’ online learning communities?
A. We are transitioning in 2013 to a single website (storychasers.tv) as the home for all our learning communities.
We are in the process of migrating content and members from the three learning communities we have maintained since 2007:
Q: What is the schedule of upcoming workshops?
A: We maintain a unified, public Google calendar of all our workshops. Our facilitators are available to lead workshops upon request, so if you are interested in hosting a workshop in your area please contact us.
Q: How much does it cost to attend a Storychasers workshop?
Several pricing options are available for our workshops, and prices can vary depending upon your location. Generally we provide two workshop facilitators for 10-25 participants / workshop attendees. When workshop registration is available via Eventbrite, ticket prices are listed. Some discounts may apply.
What to Bring
Q: What should I bring to a Storychasers iPad workshop?
A: Our iPad digital storytelling workshops are BYOI: Bring Your Own iPad. We strongly recommend you bring an iPad2 or newer iPad, which has a built-in camera. The iPad Mini can also be used, although the larger screen size on the fullsize iPad is especially advantageous with apps like Pinnacle Studio. You are responsible for buying and installing all required apps (listed below) on your iPad PRIOR to the workshop.
We recommend participants bring at least five digital photos that can be used in a digital story you will create during our workshop. We recommend you transfer these images TO YOUR IPAD’s PHOTO ROLL prior to the workshop, using email attachments or another method. Check out some of the example digital stories on our Storychasers’ YouTube channel to get some ideas about the story you will create and share during our workshop.
Please remember YOU must obtain permission to share photos on the Internet prior to our workshop. If you have photos of students you want to use in a story and your school does not currently have a student media permission / release form, samples from other schools are available on:
Q: What are the procedures for paying for a workshop?
A: Payments can be made for workshop attendance via school purchase orders, checks, and credit cards. Our IRS W-9 form is available if needed to process a school purchase order. Contact us directly to request an invoice for your workshop if needed. Checks and purchase orders should be made out to Story Chasers Inc. Our mailing address is available on our contact page.
Required Web Accounts
Q: What web accounts should I create for Storychasers workshops?
A: Participants in iPad digital storytelling workshops should create the following accounts, or have the account credentials available to use these accounts if previously created:
Apple ID: You will need an Apple ID (iTunes account) to purchase and download apps on your iPad. If you are using a school-provided iPad, you may need to coordinate with your school tech folks to get these apps installed in advance. More information and tutorials about setting up a personal Apple ID are available on http://appleid.apple.com. Please be sure to take care of your Apple ID setup prior to our workshop, as there is not time during the workshop to setup everyone’s accounts and go over the app download process.
YouTube account: This is a Google account which is connected to YouTube.
- If you don’t have a Google account yet, use this link to create one for YouTube.
- Use this Google tutorial for assistance creating or connecting a Google account to YouTube.
- If you have a Google or Gmail account already (this can be your school Gmail account) see these directions for help creating a YouTube channel.
- This tutorial from Google is also helpful when creating a new YouTube channel or creating a
- Instructions will be provided during your workshop about joining Storychasers.tv.
Q: Can I bring my personal laptop to use at a workshop?
A: In most cases, yes, you can and are welcome to bring your own laptop to the workshop. Note laptops are NOT required for iPad digital storytelling workshops, but you are welcome to bring a laptop if desired.
Become a Workshop facilitator
COV – CKV – CTV
Q: What do the acronyms COV, CKV and CTV stand for?
A: COV – Celebrate Oklahoma Voices, CKV = Celebrate Kansas Voices, and CTV = Celebrate Texas Voices.
Q: What are the content guidelines for videos submitted to learning communities maintained by Storychasers?
A: The following six guidelines apply to submitted videos.
- K-12 Appropriate: Contributed videos should be appropriate to show in K-12 classrooms. While not all content needs to be necessarily “appropriate” at an intellectual/cognitive level for primary age students, the words and language used should at all times be appropriate. (i.e. no profanity, derogatory language, racist language, etc.)
- Positive Themes: Themes of contributed videos should be generally positive and constructive. Issues can certainly be addressed as “Public Service Announcements” (PSAs) which are contentious and challenging to communities, but topics should be addressed in a way that is always appropriate. Use the “school board litmus test.” Is the video appropriate to show and share at a local school board meeting? If not, it is likely not appropriate to be shared here on our COV learning community.
- Professionally Representative: Remember the videos you create not only represent yourself and your school, but also your community and our state. We want to put our best foot forward. This does not mean we want to avoid all topics which could be controversial or difficult (addressing drug abuse, teen pregnancy, etc. in a PSA or service learning video can be VERY appropriate, for example) but it does mean we want to consider our audience and purpose. In general, most videos created and shared here should focus on some aspect of oral history, community history, school history, family history, or state geography.
- Audio Narration: Submitted videos should include some kind of audio narration. This can be interview audio, narrated audio by the author or another person, or a combination of these. Videos should NOT simply be images set to music, like a music video.
- Respectful of Copyright: Images, audio, music and video footage included in your video must comply with U.S. copyright law. To comply with copyright, COV project facilitators recommend participants use:
- Homegrown media: Media you create personally and either have the copyright to or obtain permission to copy and use
- Creative Commons media: Media created by others and licensed up-front for re-use and remixing
- Fair-Use media: Media which can be used under fair use provisions of US Copyright law
- Remember copyrighted works CAN be used in videos if they comply with fair use provisions of the law.
- For more information and guidance about copyright, Creative Commons and fair use guidelines, please refer to the Copyright and Fair Use Resources section of our project wiki. Those resources include three videos we show during our phase 1 workshop:
- Get Creative (Intro to Creative Commons)
- Copyright, What’s Copyright?
- Fair Use Explained via Disney – A Fair(y) Use Tale
- Attribution: Please include source citations for your video either in the video as end-credits or as a comment to your shared video posted in our online learning community. To do this, IT IS VERY IMPORTANT you copy image websites/URLs as you save them! We recommend doing this in a word processing document.
Q: How can I contact you?
A: Our contact information (phone, email, mailing address and an electronic contact form) is available on storychasers.org/contact-us.
Q: What are the primary goals of Storychasers’ phase 1 workshops?
A: Our technology integration workshops for teachers are designed and shared with the following philosophies and goals in mind:
- Get participants working on the computer as soon as possible.
- Get participants talking and collaborating as soon as possible.
- Try to include unexpected elements via challenges on a regular basis, to create a constructive sense of challenging immediacy.
- Present the agenda and workshop activities as being differentiated based on current participant knowledge, skills and needs. Then differentiate / customize activities as appropriate!
- Encourage fun, creativity, and laughter. Consider each workshop like a digital “ropes course,” designed with stations, challenges, partners, group work, and individual work. A key goal is learning to work together safely and effectively.
- Minimize direct instruction.
- Maximize experiential learning for maximum impact/benefits.
- If you break it or equipment gets lost, don’t contact us! (It’s yours or your school district’s)
Sole Source Letter
Q: Is a sole source letter available for Storychasers’ workshops?
A: A sole source letter for COV (Celebrate Oklahoma Voices) workshops is available. Sole source letters for CKV and CTV workshops can be provided if required. Please contact us if you need one.
Q: How can I learn more about the background and history of Storychasers?
A: The article “Empowering Oklahoma Educators to to Preserve and Share Oral History” provides a summary of our story through July 2008. We hope to write an updated version of this article for publication in 2011. If you’re interested in sharing Storychasers with your organization or reading audience, please contact us!
iPad Digital Storytelling Workshop
Q: How can I access the iPad Digital Storytelling Curriculum?
A: This is still (as of 22 Sep 2012) in draft form, but you can access it using this link or QR code.