Stories of Tomorrow – Students’ Visions on the Future of Space Exploration

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The Stories of Tomorrow project is specifically designed for teaching professionals in the disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). It introduces teachers to the concept of digital storytelling, as well as inquiry-based science teaching techniques, in order to develop, improve and enhance their teaching skills and practices.

The Stories of Tomorrow project is a contribution to a dynamic future of children’s e-book evolution. The project’s partners work on the development of user-friendly interfaces for young students, in which they create their own multi-path stories to express their imagination and creativity. Those stories make use of the latest developments in Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and 3D printing technologies to enhance their visualisation in numerous innovative ways.

The project offers these innovations through a single environment, called the STORIES Storytelling Platform, which is the place for students’ artistic expression and scientific inquiry at the same time. The students’ creations, such as paintings, models, dioramas and constructions, 3D objects and landscapes, animations, science videos and science theatre plays, are captured and integrated in the form of interactive e-books. The STORIES technical team designs advanced interfaces that allow the students to augment their characters, buildings, greenhouses and different 3D geometrical structures on a tablet or their computer. They can then inspect their work with the use of a mobile device.

The outcome of the students’ work is tracked and the video stream augmented with an animated 3D version of the character or the artefact. To achieve this, the project has initiated a novel cooperation among creative industries and electronic publishing, educational research institutions in the field of STEM, schools and informal learning centres. Teachers and students then test the platform in real educational scenarios in the fifth and sixth grade in Greece, Portugal, France, Finland and Japan.

Basic information

Country: Bulgaria, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Portugal

Coordinator: University of Bayreuth, Germany https://www.ub.uni-bayreuth.de/de/index.html/

Programme: Horizon 2020

Project Acronym:

Target groups: education authorities, general public, parents, primary school students, researchers, teachers, trainee teachers

Topic: Astronomy, Computer science, Gender in STEM, Information technology, Software engineering, Education

Start year: 2017

End year: 2019

Url: http://www.storiesoftomorrow.eu

Contact person: Gregory Milopoulos, Email milopoulos (at) ea.gr

Stories of Tomorrow (STORIES) is a research and development project funded by the European Commission, involving fifteen project partners in ten different countries. The project started in January 2017 and is funded for the period of thirty months. The project uses the concept of storytelling as a catalyst for effective interaction between art and disciplines in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) which in many ways share similar values, themes and characteristics.

The STORIES project introduces creative approaches in STEM education to generate alternative ideas and strategies within scientific enquiry, as an individual or group, and critical reasoning between those.

The project’s partners design and test a new vision for teaching, which leads to the development of strategies for how teachers’ roles and conditions can support and enable deeper learning for students. To do that, the project’s partners use innovative and meaningful digital technologies, such as advanced interfaces, learning analytics, visualisation dashboards and applications in Augmented or Virtual Reality. They also construct a storytelling platform that students can use to develop and publish stories about a Mars Mission.

Therefore, the STORIES project’s partners:

  • Develop a pedagogical framework that builds on the essential features of creative Deeper Learning in STEM and supports creativity as a generic element in the processual and communicative aspects of the pedagogy through the integration of arts (virtual arts, performing arts, design, music);
  • Develop an advanced storytelling platform, enriched with innovative interfaces to support students’ creations. The students’ creations (paintings, models, dioramas and constructions, 3D objects and landscapes, animations, science videos and science theatre plays) are captured according to their scenarios and are integrated in storylines. The storylines are available in the form of e-books, while the consortium deploys a series of advanced interfaces that bring students’ stories to life;
  • Implement the approach and the technologies in real learning scenarios in Greece, Portugal, France, Finland and Japan. The project involves teachers and students of the fifth and sixth grades – from the ages of ten to twelve. The pilot activities last five to six months at each school;
  • Implement a continued learning process, based on the deeper learning paradigm, that addresses not only intellectual ability, but also motivational ability. To accomplish a holistic assessment of STEM mastery within the deeper learning paradigm in science education, the project’s partners develop standardised assessment tools that also cover intellectual and motivational abilities.
  • Implement a strategy for raising awareness about digital storytelling which contributes to an effective communication about the project’s results and outcomes. The STORIES Digital Library includes all students’ stories that are developed during the project and created to disseminate the visions and the work of the young students.

Find more information at: http://www.storiesoftomorrow.eu/

The project’s partners develop various outputs relevant for teachers during the project’s lifetime.

The STORIES Storytelling Platform

The project’s partners develop an advanced storytelling platform, enriched with innovative interfaces to support students’ creations. The students’ creations, including paintings, models, dioramas and constructions, 3D objects and landscapes, animations, science videos and science theatre plays, are captured according to their scenarios and are integrated in storylines. The storylines are available in the form of e-books, while the consortium deploys a series of advanced interfaces that bring the students’ stories to life.

The STORIES Repository and Library

The repository and library include all the students’ stories that are developed during the project’s lifetime to showcase the visions and the work of the young students.

The STORIES Tool-Kit

As part of the support offered to the schools, teachers and students that are involved in the implementation process, the project’s team develops a collection of guidelines and support materials.

Concurrently, the project organises summer schools every year for teachers in Europe. The STORIES Summer Schools include presentations, followed by practical sessions and workshops, focusing on:

  • Concepts and skills of storytelling, inquiry-based processes and multidisciplinary teaching.
  • Approaches to effective interaction between Arts on the one hand and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) on the other.
  • Familiarisation with the Stories of Tomorrow digital storytelling platform and educational digital repositories
  • Assessment of students’ Deeper (Science) Learning.
  • Preparing educational resources and activities and designing and creating stories.
  • Uploading and sharing digital stories for use in primary and lower secondary schools.
  • Hands-on sessions, dedicated to the creation of animations, videos and resources related to science.
  • Building a community of educators that will collaborate in the next few years and test their storytelling approach within the framework of the “Stories of Tomorrow” project.

Find out more about the summer schools at: https://stories.ea.gr

 

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