History ALIVE ~ Be a StoryKeeper

By saving our stories and the stories of our families, we create a lasting legacy that time will not erase. We ensure that who we are and what we believe in will endure and not be forgotten over time.

Interviewing ordinary people - those who live in your neighborhood, older members of your family - is terribly exciting and rewarding. With a few digital tools, young interviewers are able to capture the unofficial, unrecorded history of daily lives in families and communities. And that is the sacred work of being a StoryKeeper!

Students as Story Catchers - The Task

Capturing and documenting the lives around us is sacred work - preserving stories is a gift to the storymaker (interviewer) as well as the storyteller (interviewee). Being a story catcher aka reporter is like having a magical passport. It's a license to ask questions, be curious and explore worlds of experiences. But we want students to be more than technical "tape recorders" - we want the investigators to uncover THE story - the one that needs to be told. AFTER the interview, the investigator needs to make meaning of the story they heard. By developing a storyline of THE story that needs to be told, the storymaker can make the interview come ALIVE for others.

  • Create a production piece that makes meaning with these two choices:
    • A docudrama (act as IF you were the storyteller - take a walk in their shoes telling the story w/ lesson learned)
    • A describe and conclude (tell about information gathered PLUS wrapping up with wisdom learned or reflective conclusion)


Learning Objectives

History ALIVE projects can use many different media while still meeting the purpose of historian MEETS technology with rigor and relevance. This topic can be delivered as a session for awareness; as a one (1) day workshop for understanding and interest building; or be extended 2-3 days for hands-on crafting your own interviews into digital storytelling while learning processes, digital tools and assessment. An Artist-in-Residence Program is also available.

  1. What is an investigative reporter?
  2. How do you get started with identifying and engaging community members?
  3. How do you conduct successful interviews?
  4. How do you know you have found the "story that needs to be told?"
  5. What content-building steps would guide students to develop rigor in their narratives?
  6. What media-making steps would guide students to create effective craftsmanship?


Teen Reporter Handbook