Amy Traggianese | August 2016

Writing… with a digital twist!

All students need strong reading, writing, speaking and listening skills to be able to perform in all curricular areas. This is why arts and technology integration is so awesome! Students can strengthen their English Language Arts skills through the use of the arts and technology to create digital stories. They can speak or write about them. Combining art and technology is a great motivator for students of all ages. 

I had the opportunity at the HOT Schools Summer Institute last month. My favorite professional development occurs when I can learn hands-on, so I lead a workshop for educators where they had time to create. Learning something new is SO important for teachers! Educators who are continually learning can fully remember and understand the learning process that their students go through. It is like a “magic” circle of learning! The teacher learns, makes mistakes. Then the teacher teaches, remembers how they learned, modifies the lesson and then teaches and guides their students.

Teachers creating lessons, Education Closet

Teachers creating!

Visual images help us to remember. As an art teacher, I love using nonlinguistic representations for my own learning and student learning. It is best if students can create their own images. During the workshop, I provided some examples, very brief instruction, some play-doh, and other assorted materials. The participant’s dove right in with others or by themselves. Here is a link to the videos that were created in about one hour.

Using a mobile device:

  • Students and teachers can create their own content
  • Students can show what they know
  • Easy to use
  • Upload to Google Drive, Dropbox or other “cloud”
  • Can be uploaded to YouTube

If you have a device with a camera, you can get a free stop motion app like iMotion or PicPac. Here, I used iMotion and my iPad to create this demo: (watch and retell my story!)

About the Author

Amy Traggianese has been an elementary visual arts educator in CT since 1995. A former kindergarten and first grade teacher, she has over 30 years of arts integration experience. Amy specializes in integrating language arts, math, science and technology into the choice art studio. She is an arts integration coach for The Institute for ARts Integration and STEAM. Amy is an active educator voice on Facebook and Twitter and loves a good Twitter chat. Connect with her on social media or at [email protected].