This guide will take you through three stages of implementing Storypark at your service:
1. Implement and Prepare: Setting up Storypark for the first time
Before you get started
Storypark is designed to work alongside your practice and existing devices so you can use phones and tablets, but you can also use digital cameras and computers.
There are a few things you can do to get the best out of Storypark:
Log in to Storypark
If you’ve been sent an invitation, accept to join your service’s Storypark account.
Or, if you’re setting up your service’s Storypark account for the first time, go to www.storypark.com and click the ‘Try for free’ button for your 30-day trial.
Invite your teaching team
Invite your teaching team to Storypark so they can explore and get comfortable with the service. Each educator should add a profile image when setting up their profile - this helps parents recognise them online.
Attend an online workshop with your team
We recommend that all educators attend one of Storypark’s online workshops live or recorded. Gain confidence, build capability and have questions answered.
Add children one-by-one, or add multiple children by downloading a spreadsheet template and adding children from your database. When you are starting out, adding multiple children means you can create all your child profiles in one go.
Choose a curriculum or philosophy
Learning tags help you link stories to your curriculum, learning outcomes or philosophies. Select a public set of tags, adapt one to suit, or create your own. Attach learning tags to stories to watch and analyse children’s progress.
Practice creating stories
Experiment with the story editor and publish some test stories with your team.
When you have large numbers of children, having smaller groups or ‘rooms’ can make managing stories faster and easier. These can be age or care type based for example.
Set up an ‘About page’ for your service
Your ‘About’ page is a great place to share frequently requested documents, centre info or educator bios, and is visible to all family members. Consider using text from your service’s webpage to get started.
Prepare to invite parents
We recommend creating a story for each child so that when their parents log in for the first time there is something there for them to see. This infosheet and these videos and resources will help you show parents the impact of Storypark, and help you explain why you’re implementing Storypark at your service.
2. Engage and Collaborate: Get familiar with the day-to-day tools and engage families
You can invite the parents of all children, or start with a small pilot group. A pilot group can help others feel comfortable and understand the benefits and outcomes.
If a parent doesn’t give permission
Talk to any parents who didn’t give permission for their child to have a Storypark account. This may clear up any concerns they might have and you can reinvite the children. However, if they do not wish to be part of your Storypark community, simply remove those children from Storypark, and continue documenting learning for these children as you did before.
A story is a way to record and communicate a child’s learning and development
with family, your early learning service and eventually school. Create stories
using the story editor and encourage families to create stories and family moments too. It is useful to add learning tags to your story to highlight the learning, along with child notes to support future direction from this story.
Communicate with parents
Conversations are private messages you can have between individual or
multiple family members (and educators) in your learning community.
Child notes are exclusive to a child’s parents and you, their educators.
They enable stories/documentation to be linked to goals, strengths, milestones, aspirations or ‘where to from here’ statements. Notes can be used to show how you plan to support a child’s interest and to create regular goals with parents.
Daily routines allow you to share food, toilet, sleep and sunscreen routines with parents instantly.
Work with your team
3. Understand and Enrich: Get the most out of Storypark with advanced features
Attend an advanced online workshop
Attend a free online workshop, held twice a month, for those who’ve mastered
the basics of Storypark and want to learn more. Register here.
Every service has a collaborative planning area where your team can create plans and manage its own planning templates. Keep plans private, or invite your team and/or parents to contribute. Link stories, plans and child notes together, making it easier to visualise the learning journey for each child. And keep all your service’s tasks, admin, documents, policies and planning in one easy-to-access place.
Analyse activity and progress
Engage specialists in a child’s learning
If needed, talk to parents about inviting specialists outside of your service
(eg. speech language therapists, teacher aides, physical therapists) to participate in their child’s private notes area.
Support children’s transitions
If a child will soon be leaving for another service or to school, encourage parents to invite their future teachers to their account in the final months before leaving your service. This enables those teachers to better understand that child’s learning journey.
Build your educator profile
Engage with other educators, and choose who has access to your individual portfolio.
Have conversations with other educators – reflect on ideas, goals, assessment, and documentation practices.
Teacher portfolios are where you can show evidence of your personal progress, link to registration criteria or quality standards and work with invited mentors
Teacher reports are where you and invited mentors can analyse how you are using learning tags and sets.
Record and report against criteria
Create or adapt a learning set (eg. ‘Registered Teacher Criteria’, ‘National Quality Standards’ or other relevant assessment criteria), then link your portfolio stories
to your chosen criteria using the learning tags in these sets. Over time you can review your progress against your personal criteria, making support, reporting and assessment much easier.