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How To Create A Personal Story


How do you take a story from an idea to a fully realized digital story? Understanding the different aspects of digital stories is important in determining the necessary steps to bringing a short personal story to life. This lesson is focused on getting students to structure to plan a short documentary, around a scripted voiceover narration. By examining the structure of the voiceover script, students will brainstorm ideas for visuals and sounds and will get to create a working storyboard for a digital story. Finally, they will reflect on what skills a documentary makers might need in order to find and create a great story. 

You can deliver the four-part lesson, by starting with Let’s Get Real, which is focuses on understanding documentary conventions. Then follow it, with Telling A Real Story, which introduces students to journalistic practice, and then Choosing What Story To Tell, which focuses on finding a narrative structure for information collected through interviews. 

This is the last of a series of lessons developed as part of Your Story project, which was funded by the US Department of State, Alumni TIES and World Learning. 

Learning Objectives
  • To analyze the narrative structure in a voiceover narration
  • To examine the components of a digital story 
  • To understand how visual language influences media messages 
  • To understand how editing influences narrative construction
  • To develop skills for pre-production planning
  • To reflect on the skills needed to think like a storyteller  

Lesson Plan
Organising :
How do you create a digital story?
Arguing :
How can you think like a storyteller?
Evaluating :
How can you find the right visuals and sounds?
Adapting :
How can you plan for a short personal story?
Applying :
Your turn: Create a storyboard.