Bilkent University Preparatory School
this study the researcher aims to introduce the Storyline Method, which
is not very well known in Turkey, and to evaluate its effects in the
application to Social Studies classes. This research is particularly
valuable for its contribution of a newly developed method to Turkish
Literature and applicability of this modern method in the Turkish Education
research involved work covered in the 5th grade Turkish Social Studies
"Our Beautiful Country, Turkey" unit. It took approximately
45 school days and was done between the 17th February 2003 - 9th May
2003. The project was completed in a preparatory school in Ankara which
is connected to a private university. The students come from the higher
social economic classes and/or they have a higher English language level.
The total number of the students in each class is 18.
the school where the project took place, social studies classes occupy
7 periods in a week. The students used the school's supplies and brought
their own supplies when it was necessary.
storyline part of the project was inspired by the "Anadolu Views"
book which was written by the first Turkish botanist Prof. Hikmet Birand
(1904-1972). The project began with a typical introduction of a storyline.
After establishing the characters and setting, the stucture of the project
was completed. In this stage, Turkey's different geographical and human
characteristics were analyzed. Working in groups, the students then
discussed, produced plans and then built a 3D model. The research projects
were displayed on the classroom walls, in the school corridors and at
the annual art show.
can summarize the results as follows:
The students felt more relaxed. They had the chance to see their mistakes.
The group work helped the students to gain different views about the
same subject and the different ideas resulted in more creative work.
The students who worked well in the groups helped their peers and supported
them when they needed it. It was also noticed that the students who
enjoyed the group work had some difficulties when they started to do
more individual work.
It was seen during the project work that doing the research motivated
the students. The students emphasized that they enjoyed doing the research
during their class time. Some students even thought that they gained
more knowledge by doing the research. However, some other students stressed
that it took a long time to complete the research. Also, some of the
students in this age group got bored.
and Puppets: The feedback received from the students stated that
they found it very enjoyable to use the knowledge they gained with the
3D models. They also stated that these models helped their learning.
Another aspect of modeling is the motivation the students gained during
their class time.
It was observed that displaying the students' work gets them very excited.
For this reason, it is especially important to finish the work which
will be displayed for the parents.
The project which was completed during this period helped the students
to interact better with each other. The cooperation in the classroom
increased. As the groups knew the research questions, it enabled the
students to answer each question at their own speed before moving on
to the next one. Being able to do that supported their learning. It
was observed that the extra equipment that was brought to the classroom
increased motivation in the class. The students also stated strongly
that using the portfolio assessment technique instead of exam assessment
helped them to relax.
Website in Turkey
Guney, a teacher working in Istanbul, is already mentioned below on
this news page. The previous article described Storyline courses he
had been presenting to teachers. Now he has produced his own Storyline
website which can be viewed by clicking www.storylineturkiye.com
Storyline Course in Turkey
Guney, a Turkish teacher, came into contact with Storyline through his
sister Selma who is a teacher in Aarhus, Denmark. This led to his participating
in the International Storyline Conference 2 in Elsinore, Denmark, in
November 2003. Since returning to teach in Turkey he has used Storyline
successfully in his own classroom which has encouraged him to speak
about his experiences. Recently he was invited to give a course at a
large conference for 1200 teachers. Although his group was much smaller
than that he enjoyed his experience. These are some of his reactions
- "You should see their faces. They couldn't believe how easy it
was to go from one discipline to another and in the same theme. After
that I showed a video cassette about a Storyline filmed in Scotland
which is about "Space Abduction". I translated it from Danish
to Turkish. If I didn't do that they would still understand it again
because they where so excited. Even after my presentation time was over
people would not leave the place and they asked and asked so many questions.
They took my mobile number and my mail address and already the day after
there was some mail from them. Of course they asked me to give more
information. One them said that she had already begun to do the same
Storyline in her own class. And she was asking me how she could go further