Introduction to Yarn and the 'Weaving Ossett's History' project.
What is the 'Weaving Ossett's History' project?
- One strand of an AHRC-funded research project 'Digital Community Workspaces: Delivering Impact through Public Library and Archive networks'.
- A collaboration between Ossett Community Archive, Friends of Ossett Library, Wakefield Libraries and the University of Leeds.
- Aims to get local residents writing about or responding to Ossett’s heritage and community, and to share these stories online, linking them to existing photos and material already on the internet. Responses can take the form of creative writing, artwork, audio recordings or performance.
- See the project Yarn page at https://yarncommunity.org/projects/3
What is Yarn?
- A FREE to use collaborative storytelling platform designed with and by community groups and public sector organisations.
- Allows users to assemble archive resources and a plethora of web content to tell the stories which matter to them
- Creates a mesh of stories and aims to make the process of collating and curating archives and web content more democratic.
- Created and owned by the University of Leeds in collaboration with a team of designers at Carbon Imagineering.
- Yarn is not a repository in itself.
What resources are available?
- University of Leeds staff can offer YARN training and suggest classroom activities.
- Volunteers from Ossett Community Archive, Ossett Historical Society and Friends of Ossett Library will act as a point of contact for each school, suggest activities (see handout) and offer support.
- Numerous resources are available in both physical and online repositories...
How can Yarn be used in schools?
Schools involved in a previous research project were able to easily collate resources from archive collections and the web alongside pupils’ own work. Teachers appreciated the intuitive, tablet-friendly design, the ability to easily link
to other platforms (e.g. YouTube and Twitter) and bring a polished finish to presentations of work, whilst also supporting the development of children’s IT skills.
- Can be used both as an educational tool and as a means to collate a range of learning outcomes.
- An effective presentation tool for assemblies and performances.
Consent and Safeguarding
- We suggest that schools (rather than individual pupils) create and monitor Yarn accounts and that use of the platform is carried out with staff supervision.
- School representatives and parents will be asked to sign consent forms.
- Usual precautions around web safeguarding apply (not disclosing sensitive personal information, obtaining separate photo/video consent).
- Different publishing settings are available as well as a 'report this content' feature.
How can schools add their own photos, video and audio files to Yarn stories?
Perhaps your school already has a website or other web platform which it uses to document pupils' work. If not, why not explore some of the free web platforms documented in the linked story, above?