Ten Minute Stories

We have had some fun over the last couple of weeks with “Ten Minute Stories”.  There are heaps of websites out there on which teachers and writers have shared creative writing strategies which I have tried out with you.  Thank you for participating so willingly – I know that some of you find it hard being put on the spot and having to come up with something creative in such a short time frame.

Today we used a prompt from “Writing Prompts” .  tee-shirt writing promptHere are some of your ideas: (unedited!)

My T Shirt would be a magical T-shirt that could make me have magical powers e.g. flying, being invisible shape shifting. The T-shirt would have writing on that says “I’m magical”on the back of the shirt it would be rainbow coloured allowing it to change due to my shape-shifting. It can also change into different types of shirts e.g. tank tops singlets even a dress and pjs. All of the superheroes would be jealous of it and when i die it all the villains would dig up my grave and steal my T-shirt but it would never come off because it has a secret code to unlock it and an amazing security system way better than the banks even!! My T- shirt would also be bulletproof , fireproof and nuclear bombs would be scared of it .  My T-shirt would be invincible forever!!!!     Jaime

I would wear a large  grey t-shirt. I would wear this t-shirt because it is plain and comfy it will go with lots of things you can dress this t-shirt up or down. I would chose this t-shirt over any other because if you were to wear a small t-shirt you would grow out of it with a large one it will last you a lifetime. It chose grey as my colour because if it was white you would see the dirt and stains and grey will go with lots of clothes and you wouldn’t see the dirt . Also a nice large baggy top is comfy to wear and comfy to sleep in. Also during my life i might add some colour or something special to it to remember that time of my life so this t-shirt would also have some remembrance in it to.    Georgia

My top can change from one thing to another. I change it when I want, wash it, dry it and it will never break. With changeable colours, patterns and and pictures it is all my t-shirts in one. I chose this top as it goes with anything and everything from p.j’s to my school uniform. Blue, pink and orange or red with spots. Stripes, hearts and spirals my top has it all I could want.  When I grow it grows with me and when I start to shrink my top will still fit. This is my always changing, never breaking, forever amazing top.      Victoria

My tee shirt would have a popcorn background with a picture of a worm on it. It would represent me because I would be the worm and the green would be the world, so it would represent how big the world is and how small i am. I would chose this shirt and not another because i really like the colour green and I love worms.  I would also have a quote on the back that says if you can believe it you can achieve it. This quote really speaks to me because it gives me motivation everyday. This tee shirt washes itself sort of like a cat does so that it is always clean.  Tindra

If I had to wear a t shirt for the rest of my life it would be a plain black t shirt. I would wear this t shirt because you can wear it with anything. I would wear this t shirt because black t shirts will never go out of style. On the bottom of the t shirt it would be a big frill. If I wore a fluro yellow t shirt it would not look good with my favourite bright orange shorts!!!! My t shirt would be a fast drying material so when I took it off to wash it would dry fast. Black t shirts also make me feel very happy so I would be happy for the rest of my life.  Sophie

If I had to wear one T-shirt for the rest of my life, I would wear a magical T-shirt that has sleeves that go up and down depending on the weather. When I am hot, I can roll up the sleeves and when I am cold I would roll down the sleeves. It would be rainbow colours that change depending on the mood I am in, and it would be just that colour. The colours would fade from dark to light (top to bottom), but the actual colour fading would be the one that would change. It would be my size to start with, but then grow bigger and the sleeves would get longer when I grow taller.  The T-shirt also changes if I am playing sport or want to be fashionable for an event. You can sleep in this T-shirt because it changes fabric to whatever I want it to be.This T-shirt is water proof, fire proof, nuclear-bomb proof because who knows what I might need to beware of in my future.  I would choose this T-shirt because it is adjustable and changes with the weather, mood, time and activity I am doing.  Laura

Creative Writing

painting of trojan horseSo, another step into the unknown; the murky journey of the short story full of fantastical, wandering story lines, abrupt plot twists, over elaborate descriptions and unbelievable leaps from one scene to the next.  I love storytelling, it is the most powerful form of learning there is.  Language has developed from the oral story telling of past generations, cultures have evolved and taken on their identities as a result of the tales passed on from elders to their mokopuna and on again. We are who we are because of the stories of the world.  Who doesn’t remember sitting on a parents’ lap lost in the imaginings of the stories they were read?  I recall crawling into my parents’ bed with my three sisters on weekend mornings to cuddle up with my Dad as he told us the story of the fairies who hid in a huge wooden horse to conquer the goblins who were overpowering their kingdom.  We begged for it over and over again and asked for more and more embellishments.  It was only much later that I realised that the fairies’ wooden horse was actually the Trojan Horse!

Anyway, I digress.  Cultures are built on myths and legends which help us make sense of the world around us and how it came to be.  We thrive on real life stories – just look at the number of reality TV shows, soap operas that tell the stories of “real life”, and who hasn’t stopped to say “Oooh! Have you heard about ….?  We are fascinated by people, by stories, by questions, by answers, by imagination, curiosity and invention.

So, we have embarked on story telling.  In the last week of term we explored 5 Card Flickr with interesting results as already outlined in a recent blog.  I was lucky enough to spend some time with Alan Levine when he visited New Zealand at the end of September and talked to him some more about digital story telling.  I only wish I had more time to explore the possibilities but we have made a start.  This week we used an idea I heard about as I was surfing the internet.  Unfortunately, I didn’t make a note of the webpage so apologies to the initiator of this idea.  We have called it #storymakers and the idea is that one of the class (this time it was me, just to get them started) puts a starter sentence into a Todaysmeet.com room and then everyone else continues the story until it ends.  It’s a bit like the party game when you have to go round the table and keep the sentence going.  We started with “One day I discovered a magic button….”

a red sparkly button

We had great fun and it was interesting to observe how you “developed” the story – some of you got a little bit carried away and relied on “waking up from a dream” when someone “killed’ the character off.  I think it was challenging for you to have to think of the next line quickly and it was a quite a public forum although less public than having to say the next line out loud in an oral context.  I wonder how we could encourage the flow of the story without you having to do it so much under pressure?  I wonder if that would lead to more thoughtful ideas?  I am sure too that some of you were embarrassed and were put outside your comfort zones because either you didn’t know what to say or you felt that what you wanted to say wasn’t good enough.  Resorting to “crazy” ideas provides a “cover” of sorts, doesn’t it?  Maybe we could build the story over a lesson whilst doing other activities?  You could just keep an eye on the “Tweet” stream and see when it is your turn, or jump in when you feel ready…?  Ideas to ponder…  It was great though to see you all engaged and prepared to have a go, though.  So, good on you and let me know what you thought of the activity in the comments.

After the story was “finished” we read it out and we talked about not being able to rely on “it was all a dream” to get out of strange situations and also developing the characters as the story develops. It is clear to see what has been in the news recently … and interesting also to realise that we can only write about what we have experience of and that we can only bring our own perspectives of our understandings of those experiences to our writing too.  I know that a different group of people with different experiences would bring their own perspectives to this starter and the story would be completely different.
Here is the transcript of the story; (unedited)
One day I discovered a magic button ….
it was a blue sparkly one and it was hiding in my room
The button was circular and had a diameter of 7cm
It looke like it hadnt been seen in 100 years
It open a magical portal
but i didn’t go through
I just stood there looking at it, but then I heard cheerful music so I decided to take a look inside
but i slipped and ended up falling in a meadow
The meadow was filled with bogtrotters and nymphs
In the distance I saw a group huddled together and curiosity had the best of me
I started running over to the group and I suddenly tripped over and face planted in bogtrotters poo.
I thought really gross because it was all over my face, some went into my mouth and it tasted like shampoo
And then in the far distance there was a big BANG!!!!!!!
I then realised that I had Ebola and I died.. But then I woke up!
after dying i was really tired, and hungry so i went for a sleep and started chewing my own hand in my sleep.
I woke up and I was a new person named Bella ………. who was a princess.
I ended up being a prince….
Then out all of a sudden pineapples rained down from the sky and a lion roared in the distance…
I looked over to where the roar had came from and saw a pride a lions
They came running towards us ready to kill their prey
All of a sudden there was a baboon on the rock holding a baby cub with two other lions.it was the lion king
but I blinded them with my lightsaver and ran away
Ahhhh Sabena mamma he manana
all of a sudden everyone that i had been in contact with died and so did the animals because i had ebola.
and then in the distance I saw a man. i married him
We had a pineapple themed wedding, but then he died the next day from my ebola
the reason why i wasn’t dying because i was an immortal ebola zombie victim i had depression because i was the last living man on earth
I awoke next to the magic button, laying in a hospital bed really dying of Ebola.
I survived, because i got the magic curer from the bogtrotters
Lol, jk I’m still standing here looking at the portal. It’s kinda hurting my eyes fml.
I suddenly woke up to a holt. It turns out I was sleeping in rehab because I am Hillary duff.
THE END