I've been thinking a great deal about the importance of storytelling lately. We all know people in our lives that have been great storytellers. We could sit and listen to them for hours. Their stories made us laugh, gasp, or even make us cry. But these people have a knack at telling stories because they usually made a point. There was a climax to the story they told. It engaged you as a listener. You don't have to have the best voice to tell a good story, you don't have to look perfect either. One of the best storytellers of our time is Malcolm Gladwell. He has the frizziest hairdo, his voice has a bit of a warble, but he is amazing at telling stories that draws you in as a listener. He rounds out of his stories with a point that doesn't sound preachy, but still gets a point across and makes you think. Let's watch an example of his on TedTalks.
So what is the point I am trying to make you may ask?
I was a conference recently, and the speaker, Sir Ken Robinson said this, "Education has to be personal. Every student is an individual story. Unless education is personal, it is nothing." What piqued my interest is the phrase that every student is an individual story. I don't want our students coming to school each day as part of a mechanical process, but as an organic process. Learning must have a life of it's own. With that life is a story. Each student at Credenda is a story. A story that I want told. I don't care about what any of us look like, or sounds like, I care about about the story that is told, and we all need to listen to each others stories. It was Hemingway that said, "when people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen." I want the students of Credenda to know, that we are listening. We want to hear your stories of hope, challenges, failures, successes, and more. That is what makes our lives richer. So when you do your assignments, or come to class, approach your learning as you are telling your story. I'm listening, and so are our teachers.
Now a cool tool that I think might come in handy with teachers is CiteThisForMe. One of the things going for it, is that it allows for books, journals, newspapers, and websites to be cited and then added to your document that you are working on. It's clean and easy to use. And it's free.