Engaging Children In Literacy Through AR Storytelling.
In the digital age, technology’s intersection with education has transformed the way we approach learning and engagement. One technology that has shown significant promise in this realm is Augmented Reality (AR). AR, by overlaying digital information onto the real world, offers a unique blend of interactive and immersive experiences. Among the many applications of AR, storytelling stands out as an exciting area, especially for children. I recorded a range of simple AR story videos for my school’s home learning offer. This post will focus on creating AR videos for your literacy lessons.
The Magic of AR Storytelling
AR storytelling brings stories to life in an interactive, engaging way that traditional books or e-books cannot. It allows children to become an active part of the story, exploring the narrative world in 3D, interacting with characters, and even influencing the story’s plot. This active participation significantly enhances their engagement and promotes deeper comprehension. This is still a few years away but I experimented last year with writing the first sensory story in the metaverse.
AR storytelling can be a powerful learning tool. By immersing children in the story, AR can make abstract concepts more tangible and understandable. Furthermore, the interactive nature of AR encourages critical thinking, problem-solving, and creativity. Whilst a fully immersive AR experience is unrealistic and unaccessible for most pupils at the moment we can use free and common AR apps to enhance our storytelling.
How Does AR Storytelling Enhance Engagement and Learning?
Engagement in Literacy Lessons
AR storytelling captivates children by turning passive reading into an interactive experience. It allows children to explore the story world, interact with characters, and even manipulate story elements. By becoming an active participant, the child is more engaged and invested in the story.
AR storytelling has the potential to significantly enhance learning. By presenting information in a 3D, interactive format, children can better understand and remember complex concepts. Furthermore, the problem-solving and decision-making aspects of interactive AR stories can develop critical thinking skills. Whilst this post is focussing on making the videos for the children you will find that they will be easily able to create their own if you have the right Edtech resources.
How to Create an AR Storytelling Experience for Children
If you’re interested in using AR for storytelling with your class or children, here’s a simple guide to get you started.
Step 1: Choose Your Story
Choose a story that your child loves. It could be a classic fairy tale, a chapter from their favourite book, or even a story you’ve created together. I chose the classic Going on a Bear Hunt (Video above).
Step 2: Select an AR App
There are several AR apps available that are designed for storytelling. Some popular ones include Snapchat and TikTok. Basically if you have a smartphone you have access to AR apps. These apps come with a range of features that allow you to create interactive, immersive stories. Download an app that suits your needs and is compatible with your device.
Step 3: Create Your AR Story
Once you’ve chosen your story and downloaded an app, it’s time to start creating your AR story. Most apps will guide you through the process. You’ll be able to add images, sound effects, and interactive elements to your story. To make the bear hunt video I had to record and download a number of short clips using different apps (App smashing it used to be called) and then combined them in the free iMovie app
Step 4: Test Your Story
Before sharing the story with your child, make sure to watch it through. Check that all the elements work correctly, and the story flows as you intended.
Step 5: Enjoy the Story with Your Child
Now comes the fun part! Sit down with your child and enjoy your new AR story. Encourage them to interact with the story and explore the AR world you’ve created.
AR Elements to Include
AR storytelling represents a leap forward in children’s education and engagement. By merging traditional storytelling with cutting-edge technology, we can create immersive experiences that captivate children, ignite their imaginations, and make learning a joy.
Sure, here are some examples of elements that can be included in Augmented Reality storytelling:
- Images: Images can be used to create immersive environments, tell stories, and provide information.
- Video: Video can be used to bring stories to life, create interactive experiences, and provide a sense of immersion.
- Sound: Sound can be used to create atmosphere, enhance storytelling, and provide instructions.
- Motion: Motion can be used to create interactive experiences, tell stories, and provide information.
- 3D objects: 3D objects can be used to create immersive environments, tell stories, and provide information – TikTok is good for this.
- Haptics: Haptics can be used to create a sense of touch, enhance storytelling, and provide instructions.
These are just a few examples of the many elements that can be used in Augmented Reality storytelling. With the continued development of AR technology, we can expect to see even more creative and innovative ways to use AR to tell stories. Currently I am still a bigger fan of immersive storytelling using simple technology just to augment the physical props and environment. As we continue to explore AR’s potential, one thing is certain: the future of storytelling is bright, and it’s augmented.