Telling Stories to Narrate Futures: Engaging Storytelling as Research Practice with High School Females

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Author: Amanda Hill, St. Mary’s University, USA
Email: : hill5@stmarytx.edu
Published: October 7, 2019
https://doi.org/10.22492/ijpbs.5.si.04

Citation: Hill, A. (2019). Telling Stories to Narrate Futures: Engaging Storytelling as Research Practice with High School Females. IAFOR Journal of Psychology & the Behavioral Sciences, 5(si). https://doi.org/10.22492/ijpbs.5.si.04


Abstract

This paper discusses “Exploring Our Information Diets,” a yearlong project that gave female high school students an opportunity to use creative engagement as a research platform to explore their information diets and media consumption. The project was created in partnership with an urban high school and a theatre for families and young audiences in Orlando, Florida. The author explores the methodology behind the project, examines the process undertaken, investigates the opportunities the project offered students, and studies how this creative engagement shaped the presentation and dissemination of the students’ research. During the course of the project, students constructed live and digital performance pieces that organized their findings related to patterns and expectations of gender construction. The author worked with students to identify the images and messages they encountered in the media they frequently used. The author employed methodologies of participatory action research, live performance, and digital storytelling in order to ensure the students were engaged research collaborators, ensuring their participation in collecting data and formulating conclusions. Using this methodology, the author asked students to interrogate their media intake and use their observations to reach a larger audience in two storytelling mediums: live performance and digital video.

Keywords

digital storytelling, information diets, participatory action research; identity, gender