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Posts Tagged ‘stories

 
Yesterday, STonline highlighted six stories that broke on social media before other media outlets picked up on them.

The writer declared: What is clear from these impactful social media stories is that whatever happens online could lead to serious real life consequences.

That is putting things backwards.

What should be clearer is that these events started with real life and its consequences. Social media was part of real life and its consequences.

Some quarters of the media and schools might wish to dwell in a dichotomous world of social media and non-social media. The rest of the world has moved on.

But just because you get it backwards does not mean that you have to live backwards. Move forwards and keep going that way.


Video source

Last week, my son and I caught Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy (GoG) on the big screen. I was more entertained than I thought I would be, so I wondered why.

I also peered though my lens as an educational technology consultant and examined my thoughts against what I facilitate at change management workshops.

There are five main heroes in the movie and the creators did a pretty good job explaining the backstories of four of them. This is quite a feat given that backstories sometimes slow the main story down.

But the individual stories, brief and spread out in the movie, only strengthened the connection with the fictitious characters. They not only seemed more real, you also understood why they did what they did.

In any change management, it is easy to lose sight of the change agents in favour of the change processes or products. One tenet I stand by is that the most important and difficult change involves people.

Products like programs will change with affordances of newer technologies. Processes will change to take advantage of those technologies. But people tend to hold these processes and products back.

For ICT-mediated change to be effective, each person must develop their own story of technology integration. This might involve a process they use that results in a product, or a product they use to create a process. People only start to write and tell their own stories when they buy in to the benefits of using technology and take ownership of both the problems and solutions.

The other concept I took away from GoG was how the Guardians abandoned their personal agendas to adopt a common mission. It was only when they focused on something larger than themselves that they started to support each other and fight a common enemy.

Sometimes that common mission, enemy, or goal is not obvious. It takes a leader, often one that emerges without a top-down vote from the pack, to inspire by example, articulate a group’s purpose, and show the way. Taking any one of those three ingredients out leaves you with change entropy.

Like a good movie, positive change can be designed. But instead of focusing on special effects or the budget, I say we start with a good storyline. When the going gets tough, we should return to the narrative because that is what people relate to. It is what brings people together so that they can tell their own stories. When those stories intertwine, you see the change happening.

 
This article does a good job of selling the idea of using stories to get your point across. Up to a point.

I believe in the power of stories. But I think there is a problem with describing stories as vitamin pills that are good for you but are not fun to take. These sorts of vitamins are not natural, may be hard to swallow, and are taken separately from a meal.

Vitamins occur naturally in some foods. You consume them without knowing and require no extra effort.

Likewise, any ICT-mediated change effort or lesson activity can be integrated or implemented as a separate activity. The pill might be more concentrated and easy to mass produce. But it is not natural and may be hard to swallow.

It is Friday and it is time for something light.

This is a YouTube series worth watching. Here is the trailer:


Video source

And this is the first episode, Scary Smash:


Video source

The video series is built on the creativity of kids and their fearlessness in telling stories. Anything is possible.

The series is put together by another group of kids (adults who retain their sense of play and wonder) to remind those who have forgotten what they are missing out on.

Yahoo! News – Hit videogames have stories to tell by AFP

Here’s a snippet from a gamer:

“If parents thought their children were immersing themselves in a deep storyline, contemplating morality and the good of humanity, and making moral choices for a side things would be a lot easier for us.”


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