Transmedia: can it be used in education?

A few weeks ago I was lucky to be able to meet Jeff Gomez from Starlight Runner. Listening to him talk was a like a light bulb switching on, he had managed to articulate all of the ideas and thoughts that had been swirling around in my head for a few years now into a ‘thing’ – he called it transmedia storytelling – I’m thinking this term might have already become redundant (more on that in another post). Transmedia storytelling has been picked up by the entertainment industry, a multi-pronged approach to building up excitement about a new movie and continue it beyond the release date. The cynic in me feels its probably to sell more product, test to see if a sequel might have legs…….regardless, its almost an expected part of the big Hollywood blockbuster experience these days. A great example of this is James Cameron’s Avatar.avatar What really grabbed me was the importance of the grand narrative, the story that ties all of these different platforms and multimedia experiences together – he reiterated the idea that the story needed to be expanded beyond the initial narrative, that it needed to be more complex, engage the reader in a new way. This go me thinking, how could we use this in education? Imagine learners who are so engaged that they move beyond, they engage beyond the expected level. This sounds exactly what we aim to achieve in our teaching, inspire students to move beyond the surface level of a topic or lesson, and to really engage with the topic. I could see us build a multi-platform approach to teach maths, English – any subject. It would engage, stimulate and not necessarily require technology expertise – programs like might enable a really basic version of it. Things to ponder, how we deliver online learning might be about to change.

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