Paly library promotes nationwide event: The Great Thanksgiving Listen

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    The Palo Alto High School library is promoting a nationwide story sharing event to help connect students to their elders called “The Great Thanksgiving Listen”. Photo courtesy of storycorps.com

    The Palo Alto High School library is encouraging participation in “The Great Thanksgiving Listen”, a story sharing project held created by Storycorps.The Great Thanksgiving Listen takes place online through Nov. 28, the end of Thanksgiving weekend. Storycorps is a non-profit organization dedicated to oral-based story telling. Those who participate in Storycorps record their life experiences that are then transformed into animations. It’s Storycorps’ goal to create videos that reflect the powerful, individual experiences of Americans across the country.

    The Great Thanksgiving Listen gives students a chance to interview an “elder” and capture his or her life stories, according to librarian Rachel Kellerman. Afterwards, students are given the option to upload the finished animated videos to the United States Library of Congress.

    Kellerman says she finds value in helping students participate in the nationwide project.

    “We are such a diverse and interesting country and I have such a limited experience in this world that when I hear other people’s stories it helps me to feel connected to my fellow citizens,” Kellerman said. “I also learn a lot about compassion and courage from listening to how people struggle and embrace life’s challenges.”

    According to Kellerman, during the event, students are free to book an online time to record a story of the person they choose to listen to. StoryCorps has an app that is designed to help students create questions, take pictures with the storyteller and upload the clip. In order to download the app, students must have parent permission, according to Kellerman.

    “The Storycorps interview process only takes a couple of hours, and it can be very uplifting and memorable,” Kellerman said.

    The Paly library is providing more information for students who are interested in Storycorps. To get help in participating, see Kellerman in the Paly library on Friday or check her updates on Schoology.

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