Digital Learning Stories:
Empowering Students' Representations and Reflections
Examples of Learning Stories
Reggio Emilia
In the Reggio Emilia approach, documentation of the children's work as it progresses is an important element of the learning process for children, teachers, and parents. Photographs are taken of the children engaged in learning activities, and notes are added regarding conversations with peers and teachers as they discuss their activities, their ideas, their feelings, and their developing understanding. These graphical artifacts of the learning process are displayed in a manner that will support the learning process, serve as artifacts for authentic assessment, and foster dialogue between the participants in the process. On the right is an example of documentation from a Reggio classroom where students are working on the color green. Note the careful representation of the different steps in each student's process of working with the materials and constructing an understanding.
Discovery 1
In Christchurch New Zealand, a discovery-based learning school uses innovative and pedagogically powerful methods for supporting learning. One of these is encouraging students to engage in "Celebrations of Learning" at the end of a project. These celebrations take place in front of the whole school as well as visiting parents. They are designed to allow the students to describe the process of learning, to present examples and artifacts of the process, and to encourage community recognition of the learners and their efforts. Below is a picture of a learning celebration of a group of young students who are presenting a digital movie of their work. View more photographs of students engaged in all stages of the learning process.
Mozart Project
This is an example of a DLS completed by a 4th grader in Oregon. After being assigned to do a 'report' on a famous person of his choice, the student spent considerable time researching Mozart using books and the WWW. He then developed a complete set of interview questions and answers only being assisted by his mother with the typing of the materials. The next step was to videotape the elements of the project and edit them together using iMovie. After this was completed the video was presented to his class and he discussed his work and answered questions. The final aspect of his project was a videotaped self-reflection on the process and outcomes of his work. As he completed creating a DVD of the video he also created and included a "bloopers" segment on the DVD. The video on the left is one of these three video components of the project. It represents a classic example of the power of Digital Learning stories to go beyond a traditional representation of understanding. In it you can see the depth of understanding not only of the historical elements of the composer's life, but also the nuances of his personality and some of the anecdotes interesting to a 4th grader.

For further examples by 4th through 6th graders, please visit the DLS video grid

This is a large file that will take some time to run.
Please be patient.
Mark Bailey's Home -
Copyright © 2004. All rights reserved, educational uses excepted
Direct comments or questions to

Page last updated on Monday, September 3, 2007