Ira Glass Talks About Elements of Great Storytelling
Ira Glass, host of This American Life, has taken the time to talk about the keys to great storytelling. In these videos (linked below) Glass shares tips on presentation and development of stories. I think I caught him saying “hell” twice, but the rest of the discussion is very relevant for anyone teaching storytelling.
I heard an amazing graphic designer say something about loving restrictions because they force creativity (a great podcast from SXSW). That’s something we ought to use, as well as do, in teaching. So let’s start by restricting the students . . . 6 Word Stories This is a great way to get students focused on story elements and on clear, concise language. They’d also be great writing prompts. This link is to Say It Better where I found the post and this one is to a much larger list of 6 word stories at Wired. Some of the examples have non-school safe language so you probably won’t want to send students right there. My favorites- With bloody hands, I say good-bye. – Frank Miller Machine. Unexpectedly, I’d invented a time – Alan Moore This assignment forces a lot of deep processing and creativity. You could also use it as an option for your vocabulary work with bonuses for good “stories” with more than one vocab word in them (used correctly of course). You might want to expand the word limit but make things hard for your students. Difficult and creative is the opposite of boring. 4 Slide Sales Pitch It’s similar in idea to dy/dan’s four slide sales pitch. how well you can sell yourself in four (4) picture-only slides. […]
Silhouette Take a silhouette from a movie, fill it with another scene from that movie to create something evocative of both yet entirely new. Pay close attention to the colors you use. To increase difficulty make it monochromatic. -via FFFFound Coupons Re-imagineCopyright Jim Groom key elements/lessons/morals of the movie as coupons. -via SuperPunch Rid the World Think up 12 creative ways to rid the world of your worst enemy. Create media to represent each piece. Don’t limit yourself to 2d or visuals. -via SuperPunch Perspective Use perspective to change the story a photograph tells. CogDog Found this one and couldn’t resist posting it for Alan. Remake a movie in comic format with dogs as the characters. –via Blame it on the Voices
Currency Redesign This would be a fun way to look at our government (and other countries for that matter). It’s simple but complex. How do you redesign our currency so that it reflects our history and current values? There’s a lot of interesting analysis potential there. Partnering with an art class would give you some added advantage and would allow for more focus on art as problem solving. Monsters Inspired by this Boing Boing post, I thought it’d be fun to have students draw a monster of their choosing (maybe give it some particular talents) and then randomly assign them to other students who then write a story with the monster as a main character. The artist then works with the writer as a peer editor. I’d do this online and then mix in other monsters and story lines. Then the larger group has to look at the stories and figure out how they’ll merge. Drugs This list of the top 25 psychiatric prescriptions and a comparison to their numbers in 2005 would open the door for a number of conversations about our society and medicine in the U.S. I’d love to see overall prescriptions and a comparison of those numbers between countries. Random Thoughts This card trading game concept for medical students is worth thinking about more. I’m in […]