This Summer I had the good fortune of working with professor Angela Gosetti-MurrayJohn and the students of her “The Classical Tradition” course. I would like to say I came up with some original and elaborate EdTech scheme to change the world through mediated mean, but I didn’t. However, Angela did by pushing her class to explore a variety of digital tools for relating their work. And I just happily obliged by pretending to be a dog, and barking about 50 ways you could present a digital story with free Web 2.0 tools.
During the session where I talked to the class about these tools, I channeled Alan Levine’s presentation on the 50 Ways resource that he gave at Northern Voice 2008—which was a gem. I found myself laughing hysterically when he went to the Blabberize homepage and showed the Llama speaking with a thick, comical Indian accent. It stuck with me, so I tried it out on this group and lo and behold everyone was laughing hysterically and I felt good. Nonetheless, I still wrote Blabberize off as a pretty useless tool, and went on to my own personal favorites once I had their attention like YouTube, VoiceThread, VuVox, FlickrSlidr, etc.
So when I saw a group from the class that was working on the theme “War in the Aeneid“ and had incorporated Blabberize effectively into their web-based, thematic readings of The Aeneid and war, I was intrigued. Here it is below, featuring none other than Vergil himself:
Now, that is an entertaining and intelligent use of this seemingly silly technology to set the stage for a dynamic, media-rich site dedicated to The Aeneid. What’s more, this group utilized a number of embeddable resources from YouTube and Comiqs to highlight and contextualize their presentation while at the same time enriching their own readings. Alan’s 50 Ways is the resource that keeps on giving and, as an added bonus, just about every tool that has embed code available works with UMW Blogs, making it the Web 2.0 Digital Storytelling publishing platform par excellence 🙂