With Digital Storytelling, it was important to us that participants focused on a single piece for both days, taking an idea through multiple iterations and being thoughtful and intentional about the choices they were making as storytellers and artists. We also wanted people to be able to go deep into a tool they wanted to get better at using.
In planning, the ideas of failure and being a beginner as a theme really stuck for us. Since many teachers are beginners in media production, we wanted to create a space that felt safe to try stuff out, get honest feedback, and make changes to improve.
Unsurprisingly, we didn’t have enough time to go as deep into the feedback/ iteration process as we wanted (ironic, since this was our main goal!). But we were able to take a few people’s projects through the Critical Response Process, an artist-directed critique process that was designed to make people feel safe sharing their work and getting honest feedback (read more about CRP and Liz Lerman HERE).
As we were reflecting at the end of the two days, I think we were all hit by how much we talk about encouraging students to take risks and learn from mistakes, but that intention so quickly gets eclipsed by other priorities. I know I was left wondering, “What are structures that we can build into classrooms to really manifest the value we place on failure as part of learning?”