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Life Event Storyboard Cards For Memoir Team Writing

Young people collaborate with older adults to mutually capture memories of major life events and write a memoir of each of their lives using life event storyboard cards

Photo of Avi Solomon
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How would you describe your idea in one sentence?

Young people collaborate with older adults to mutually capture memories of major life events and write a memoir of each of their lives using life event storyboard cards. This is a mutually beneficial relationship that leverages the unique talents of each team member.
"Whoever destroys a soul, it is considered as if he destroyed an entire world. And whoever saves a life, it is considered as if he saved an entire world."
-Jerusalem Talmud, Sanhedrin 4:1 (23a)

A storyboard is a sequence of images and words drawn together on a page to form a narrative. A storyboard is an apt metaphor for how we make sense of our own life history. Storyboarding can be used to sense emergent patterns in our own life story and to envision the life experiences that we wish to welcome into our future.

A Life event storyboard card is a paper storyboard template with life event prompts (e.g. what is your first memory, who influenced you the most, what is the recipe for your favorite dish etc.) printed on the back of the card to help quickly capture major life events.

The life event prompts can be adapted from the list of questions in Barbara Haight's Life Review Form.

Young people will collaborate with older adults to mutually capture memories of major life events and write a memoir of each of their lives using life event storyboard cards. This is a mutually beneficial relationship that leverages the unique talents of each team member (even people in their teens can benefit from writing a memoir). Two young people (combining drawing and writing skills)  could work together with one older adult. Interviews would be conducted in person and the writing could be done over the course of a semester.

A memoir storyboard would be made using the life event storyboard cards to capture and guide writing and structuring the content of the memoir, which can also be accompanied by relevant multimedia. The final edited memoir document could be published as an ebook and a print book with the older adult's permission and all revenues would accrue to the older adult.

References:
The Handbook of Structured Life Review by Barbara K. Haight and Barrett S. Haight. Health Professions Press, 2007.
Telling the Stories of Life Through Guided Autobiography Groups
by James E. Birren and  Kathryn N. Cochran. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001
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Who are the target users of your idea and how does your idea speak directly to their needs, life stages and goals?

High School and College Students.

How might your idea scale and spread to reach as many people as possible?

The life event storyboard card template could be made freely available in multiple languages as a PDF download for global distribution and use by anyone interested.

What early, lightweight experiment can you try out in your own community to test any assumptions you might have about your idea?

Interview an older adult to storyboard the main events in their life.

What aspects of your idea could benefit from the input, skills or know-how of our OpenIDEO community?

Prototype this: http://www.scribd.com/doc/235263627/Life-Event-Storyboard-Prompt

Evaluation results

15 evaluations so far

1. How well does this idea inspire and engage young people to support older adults through mentorship?

Really well – this idea clearly activates young people to support older adults - 40%

It’s getting there but could use a bit more work to flesh out exactly how - 40%

This idea doesn’t really address how to inspire and engage young people as mentors to older adults - 20%

2. How clearly does this idea outline a path to scale so that it can spread from one local community to around the world?

Crystal clear – I understand all the milestones that this idea would need to hit in order to spread beyond one local geography - 20%

It’s pretty clear that this idea has the potential to scale but the steps needed to grow aren’t detailed enough - 53.3%

Not very clear – I’m not sure this idea is designed to scale given how it’s explained here - 26.7%

3. How well does this idea define who its target users are and the ways that it can meet their needs and life stages?

Very well – I understand exactly who this idea is meant to engage and how it will support them - 40%

Ok – I’m not sure I could tell you exactly who the target user is but I might be able to guess - 53.3%

It’s hard to tell who this idea is actually meant to engage and support - 6.7%

4. Overall, how do you feel about this idea?

It rocked my world - 26.7%

I liked it but preferred others - 53.3%

It didn’t get me overly excited - 20%

32 comments

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Photo of Kaixuan Liu
Team

A storyboard card, contains elders' memory and experience would greatly benefit youth in their future life. The design of engagement of a variety of age ranges is fascinating! Congrats!

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