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Collaborative Story Assignment

A photo I took in 2005 was recently used to spur a collaborative writing assignment.

Thanksgiving in Hollygrove

I have no idea where the class was even located. I only found this through Flickr’s referrer logs. The students used EtherPad to collaborate, allowing me to see the final product.

Here are their instructions.

  • As a group pick one image from this   Flickr Creative Commons Search: then copy and paste the link to the   image on your group’s etherpad.
  • Next, take 1-2 minutes to   collaboratively compose a story here on your etherpad.  Don’t forget to   give your story a title and think about the elements of a good story   (e.g. character, setting, tension, drama, humor, change…)

Apparently my photo was picked by not one but two groups. Here are the results:

The Reunion

10 years has passed, and it is that time of the year: Thanksgiving! When family members, friends, colleagues and counterparts come together in thanks. But this Thanksgiving is special…this is the 10 year reunion! (Meaning High School reunion).

It is the first time that Peter, Bob and Sarah have seen each other in the past 10 years and the conversation began in an uninspired manner. But then the Corona was introduced and the truth came out.

Peter shocked the group by announcing that he had renounced his ways as a buddist priest in Tibet for enlightenment in language classrooms. Bob…was inspired by Peter and he followed his path. What about Sarah? Sarah was mad because she doesnt want Bob to go with Peter. Why? Because Bob was her experiemental android. However, Sarah had not gotten around to telling Bob that he was an android. She meant to, but she never got around to it. Now, she wouldn’t be able to break the news because Bob looooooved the holidays and January was his birthday and Valentine’s Day… forget it! Not the time to break the android news! If only Sarah could prevent Bob from working with Peter for another year. Fortunately, bob spoke no human languages. Once Peter found out, Sarah’s job would be easy. Assuming Peter’s intentions in hiring Bob were purely professional…


Once upon a time there was a hipster-giving. Two hipster dads, Milo and Otis welcomed their hipster daughtghter Fiona from her Humbolt adobe. After finishing their free-range steroid free turkey basted in corona, they were met by the officer from the dump who accused Otis of causing a ruckus. Turning off sixteen candles, Fiona makes a wish: ” I want a hipster boyfriend this year!  I’m sick of my two dads. I wish he would take me away”  But one should always be careful of what one wishes for . . . 

Because . . . the hipster rules of “hooking up” dictate that only hipsters may be with other hipsters! The hipster daughter realized that she would not be perfect for this hipster boyfriend and she would never be able to escape her hipster roots!  ARmed with a corona in one hand and organic carrots in the other, clad in organic plaid hemp pants, the hipster boyfriend, Sunshine, appeared and whisked her away to magical hipster land!!!!

why wouldnt she be perfect for him?

Published inGeekyHoly DazePix


  1. Jack Schick Jack Schick

    Progressive-rotating-Chain-Stories was one of the funner times of high-school
    free-time for my several geeky friends. Sometimes it seemed these were the only
    real creative-mind free times for guys to enjoy any un-programmed images.
    Newbies would put us down until they got a chance to take a story-line or a
    scene or an established character and just go with whatever was fun in some
    kind of continuity….Yay!

  2. Terri Terri

    Hey Bart,

    Just because you thought that people using your picture was a cool thing . Here is another hit.. I am teaching a group of expat teachers in Shanghai about using technology in their classrooms… We used your blog of an example of how you could engage ELL students in writing activities using Web 2.0 media.. You should have about 15 hits from Shanghai!


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