Using Slowmation for animated storytelling to represent non-Aboriginal preservice teachers' awareness of "relatedness to country"
AbstractIn this study, a group (N=15) of final year non-Aboriginal preservice teachers participated in an elective subject that aimed to raise their awareness about Aboriginal ways of knowing. A vital aspect of the course was developing the preservice teachers' awareness of "relatedness to country" which is a key belief for Aboriginal people. The non-Aboriginal preservice teachers selected their own special place and then experienced Aboriginal ways of knowing throughout the course and visited local Aboriginal sites to hear and listen to stories shared by an Aboriginal Elder. At the end of the subject, the preservice teachers created their own animated story about their special place using an approach called called Slowmation (abbreviated from "Slow animation"), which is a narrated stop-motion animation that is played slowly at 2 photos/second to tell a story. It is a simplified way for preservice teachers to make animations that integrates aspects of claymation, digital storytelling and object animation. To research this approach, the preservice teachers were interviewed at the beginning and end of the course as well as submitting their animation for assessment. Data collected revealed that all the preservice teachers were able to make an animated story explaining their relationship to their "special place" and most developed a deeper understanding of what a relational approach to country means. Getting the preservice teachers to make animated stories helped them to reflect upon their special place and was a creative way to develop their awareness of cultural diversity, especially about Aboriginal ways of knowing.
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