I am trying out Powtoon for Education as a way to enrich a unit on expository/informational writing with my students … and I thought I might as well explore the reasons why one might remix as I explored the site …
Peace (nearly remixable),
If you have never checked out Grant Snider’s wonderful illustrations, you have been missing out. I have long loved seeing his work, and have bought his calendar (2018), bought his book, and purchased a poster from him for my classroom, and I’ve shared his work through my networks.
Grant’s latest piece was in the New York Times Book Review (although I saw it first in my RSS reader) and is called Writer’s Block, and it is full of visual puns and elements of literacy. I borrowed his image from his site and put it into Thinglink, and invite you and others to add layers of text to it.
Peace (in textual surfaces),
I worked my way back into the version of Zeega that Terry hosts (and which web browsers don’t like and call unsafe but it is fine, just so you know). Zeega allows you to layer images and gifs over music, so I took the soundtrack to a project I worked on as a remix — Four Seeds Seeking Roots — and added layers of images to it.
This is just another way of “seeing” the work through making media along a theme.
This is the direct link (and your browser may ask you to approve access). Also, you might need to unmute the audio — this is done in the bottom right corner of the page. And sometimes, the embed doesn’t play nice with browsers, either, because of iframe scripts (I guess).
Peace (along the ground),
In response to a small endeavor I called Four Seeds:
You and Terry 🤩 me with the volleying of ideas. Tutorial needed to understand process!
— Yin Wah Kreher (@yinbk) January 21, 2019
Too right. It is a process. I think it starts with three words: trust, reciprocation, and time. Join in with us. Share play. Really hard to describe, but we will try.
— Terry Elliott (@telliowkuwp) January 21, 2019
— Wendy Taleo (@wentale) January 21, 2019
Actually, Wendy wrote a lot more, at her blog, and you should read her look at what she calls “reconstruction and remix.”
Along this path, there were multiple entry points. Some came with distinct invitations. Others were less visible. It is also something built on years of riffing with each other, as Terry and I go back. We are comfortable with our remixes. We trust each other.
Perhaps this trust is the most important element of all.
Peace (in the remix),
Terry wrote the other day of seed catalogues, crafting a fine poem and offering an invitation to write with him in three stems — in the comments, in an etherpad, and in the margins. I took him up on all three and then later added a fourth: Mastodon. He added another branch, remixing my four poems.
This is the sixth: a video interpretation, as I composed on mobile device four small pieces of music to go with each piece, calling them Seed, Seedling, Sapling and Stories. Each piece has two poems — mine and then Terry’s remix.
Process Notes: I used Pablo to make the poems visual, keeping the same backdrop for each variation. The music was composed in Garageband app or ThumbJam app, written each time after reading both poems for each section multiple times. I redid the Stories piece twice, and still am not sure it does what I want it to do. Ah. Well. The video was edited and produced in iMovie. I thought about using the plant theme in Animoto, but you can’t sync music to image in there, so I stayed with iMovie.
Peace (seeds growing),
Terry took the time to grab some of my questions about digital writing (see more at this post by Terry) and popped them into a collaborative Etherpad, and then joined those questions with thoughts of his own. I made my way back this weekend to continue the conversation, and Sarah joined in a bit, too. Maybe others have done so by now, as well. The topics revolved around digital writing, related to some riffing I had done off of a piece by Anna into the margins of the writing (see my original post).
Here is the Etherpad. You are invited to add to the mix, too.
Peace (in writing),
Sometimes, I ponder the possibility that I might just be naive in my digital spaces. (Does pondering about it, negate it?)
I spend a lot of time in digital platforms like blogs, Twitter, Mastodon, etc., in the hopes of forging new collaborations; entering new networks; and finding new, and strengthening existing, connections.
I really do see the power in the possible.
Then I read the news and follow stories, and I see how dark the Internet and social platforms can become, and I think: How is THAT (doxing, attacking, etc.) happening in the same places as THIS (learning, connecting, etc.) is happening?
But it is.
I guess our choices are to either leave those places or work to make them better, or passively hope for the best. I’m naive in this, I know, but I think small actions and people connections still count and can make a difference (this is the teacher in me, for sure, with the faith of seeds planted now blooming later on), so I keep on keeping on, hoping a positive energy and a way forward, step by step, might improve the whole.
The above animated quote — taken from a post by Sheri and created with an image by Sarah — captures a lot of this line of thinking that I cling to in my naivety, that we are indeed connected to the larger possibilities of learning. But this always requires positive action on our part to improve things.
Let’s do it together.
Peace (I hope),
Sheri wrote about a Heart Compass, which made me remember Georgia Heard’s work around Heart Maps. Both had me wondering how one might move such a project of interior exploration of the heart into a digital form.
I wondered if ThingLink might work, so I gave it a try and created my own linked Heart Map. The ability to add media layers helped extend my short writing along topics of teaching, family, writing, reading and more.
Mostly, the map came out fine (I may yet add more) but I think not having the hand-drawn images of Heart Maps, as shared by Georgia Heard, and Heart Compasses, as shared by Sheri Edwards, is a loss of style, perhaps. The hand-drawn element makes those maps more … human … than mine, I think. I don’t know. Still thinking on this. Maybe this observation says something to me about the digital tools and our need to individualize our passions in this kind of personal mapping work.
Peace (in the heart),
Anna wrote a blog post, rewriting an introduction to a book. I used words from her post, from her remixed introduction, to spark small essays in the margins of her post. Only one essay connects back to her writing. The rest are riffs into someplace else altogether.
I’m curious what this kind of margin, off-centered writing does to the original piece.
Peace (writing it),
First, his (made in Lumen5):
and then my remix:
I remixed Terry’s vaiku in iMovie, using filters, text and image layers, and video playback functions. I was hoping to see the poem still make sense in reverse, given its form and function as haiku, and it sort of does.
Peace (in reverse),