Story Boarding as Instruction and Documentation in the Classroom

By Jennifer Eiserman and Janet Blatter.

Published by The International Journal of the Image

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The proposed paper will develop a theoretical and methodological context for researching the efficacy of storyboarding in supporting and documenting key learning outcomes in the Reggio-inspired art classroom. A fundamental role of the educator in Reggio-inspired settings is to observe the learning that is occurring. In order to do so, Reggio-inspired educators document the interactions of learner and material, learner and learner(s), learner and educator. This documentation is achieved through photography, videography, audiography, anecdotal note taking, and artifact collection. Together, an analysis of these documents can help educators and researchers create an image of how learning occurs. Storyboarding is the standard planning tool used in designing time-based multimedia such as animation, live action films, and games. We consider the drawings and the process of storyboarding as key to documenting and researching learning outcomes in Reggio-inspired settings. We use 3rd Generation Activity Theory as an ethnographic basis for research. We show how the storyboarding activity can be analyzed to build our understanding of learning outcomes, such as problem solving, planning, and spatial-temporal reasoning. Significantly, we argue that researchers must address stylistic and formal aspects of drawing, beyond iconic representation, if storyboarding is to be used in art educational research.

Keywords: Art Education, Design Education, Post-secondary Art Education, Art Teacher Preparation, Early Childhood Art Education, Cognitive Science, Spatio-Temporal Represenation

The International Journal of the Image, Volume 3, Issue 3, pp.59-73. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 948.768KB).

Dr. Jennifer Eiserman

Associate Professor, Department of Art, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

I am an associate professor in the Department of Art at the University of Calgary. I have been exploring the nature of learning in young children for over 10 years. My work is inspired by the pedagogy of the early childhood educators in Reggio Emilia. This practice understands young children to be competent learners, with problem solving and inquiry skills appropriate to their stage of human development. Learning what this means and how best to support their growth has been the work of my students and myself in the university classroom and within early childhood and elementary settings in Calgary, Alberta. I have learned from the children and now use this constructivist, learner centred, negotiated, generative approach with post-secondary and post-graduate students. My interest in the relationship between art and technology emerged in graduate study and has evolved as a result of what I perceive to be the necessity for those involved in the training of artists to provide a foundation in contemporary media to their students. Prior to entering academe, I worked in museums across Canada at a time when museum practice was just beginning to embrace the then emerging internet as a form of dissemination. This has led me to examine dissemination practices that are authentic to contemporary digital artforms, including online exhibitions and databases, Facebook, etc. A third area of interest is multiculturalism in art and art education. This definition includes issues with ethnicity and identity in art/art education as well dialogue between different academic disciplines.

Dr. Janet Blatter

Independent Researcher, Montreal, Quebec, Canada