As part of the collaborative project ‘Better Learning through Technology’, between Malta Information Technology Agency and the Faculty of Education (University of Malta) a workshop for the partnership participants was set up during the Easter holidays, on 29 March 2016. During this workshop, the Digital Outreach team, brought a number of MITA employees’ children aged between 7 – 10 years for a digital storytelling experience using an app (StoryLab). The theme chosen for this workshop was ‘Greek gods’. The 2-hour session was led by Mr Claudio Laferla. A group of third year students following the Bachelor of Education (Honours) in Primary Education were invited to observe and to assist the children as needed. The goal of this workshop was for the student-teachers to see how to use the app (StoryLab) as a tool for creating and writing stories with children.
The session started with an introduction and an explanation of the expected outcomes. This was followed by a prepartion of the story canvas. Then it was time for the hands-on activity. The student-teachers facilitated the discussions during the building and writing up phase. After completion, Mr Laferla used the app to record/document the children’s work. In the final part of the workshop the parents were asked to join in to celebrate the children’s achievments all together.
The children who participated in this workshop enjoyed a fun activity with subtle learning undertones. As for the student-teachers, they got to SEE how technology and the ‘improvised’ classroom practice directly affect learners, instead of being TOLD how technology and techniques might affect learners. Dr Tania Muscat, from the Department of Early Childhood & Primary Education attended the activity together with the student-teachers, while Prof. Suzanne Gatt and Dr Josephine Milton, from the same department of the Faculty of Education, helped in the organisation of the event.