- “When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”
— Ansel Adams
On March 22 and 23, third, fourth, and fifth grade students at Willow Springs Elementary School participated in a photography workshop. Students had the opportunity to take their own photos using digital photography (iPads). Students explored photography techniques such as rule of thirds, framing their photo, zooming in and zooming out, and most importantly -- listening to their muse. Check out the student galleries organized by class name. Great work Willow Springs students. A picture is worth a thousand words!
We began each workshop inviting students to think about how photography has evolved. Students selected the oldest camera and the newest camera. Students were fascinated with film cameras and looking at cameras from different eras. I told the students that the black polaroid camera was my parents' camera and it took photographs from childhood when I was their age.
Highlights from all six classes
Highlights from all Day 1 (3/21) three classes (Sutherland, Fowler, Eaton)
If you don't see your photos with your class, it is most likely in the slideshow below. There were several iPads that were disabled to share to DropBox.
Dear 3rd, 4th, and 5th Grade Students,
I am very excited to work with you next week in our upcoming photography workshop. We will be using iPads to take digital photographs. I wanted to share with you some of my favorite photographs. Here is a link to my own portfolio, where you can look at photographs I have taken.
Let's discuss some aspects of photography that create a great photograph. The most important thing is that you have to be inspired by your subject. You need to be drawn to it for some reason. That reason is muse (inspiration). When we take photographs during our workshop around the school and school grounds, follow the muse. Follow your inspiration. If you see something interesting, investigate! Look closely at your subject matter. Zoom in or zoom out. Frame your subject. Most importantly, take a lot of photos. Practice makes perfect.
So to review:
1. Follow your inspiration!
2. Zoom in or zoom out to frame your subject just right
Onto the rule of thirds...
The rule of thirds is important in photography. Here are some examples.
And finally -- composition. What story is your photograph telling? Do you see how "compose" is part of composition? To compose means to create
Compose: write or create (a work of art, especially music or poetry).
Here are some photographs from my favorite photographer, Ansel Adams who was really great at composition in photography. He was also dyslexic and struggled in school.
When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. - Ansel Adams
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Ansel Adams photos
And finally another of my favorite photographers, Legographer, Andrew Whyte -- also known as the Legographer. He is great to study for perspective in photography. He places a LEGO mini-figure in all his photos and yes, the mini-figure has a LEGO camera. I am the CEO and Founder of Brick Scholars, a mobile STEAM lab that creates opportunities for children to brick and learn. Here are some of my favorite Legographer photos.
Hello Banks Road students! I am very excited to work with you on March 20 and March 30. We will be writing I Am and haiku poems. You will have a choice on what poetry form you choose. Poetry is all about free expression so I want to give you choices.
I am providing some background information for you to read to get you excited about poetry. Poetry is wonderful because it allows children to express themselves and their ideas in the way that comes natural to them. Some poets like to write free verse, which means there are no rules to how the poem looks or sounds. Some poets like to follow formats such as haiku and limericks, which have rules. Below are some examples.
The haiku is a Japanese verse in three lines. Line one has 5 syllables, line 2 has 7 syllables and line three has 5 syllables. Haiku is a mood poem and it doesn't use any metaphors or similes. Usually when Haiku is taught the students are only given the restriction of the number of lines and syllables.
Poetry is... How do define it? After viewing the slideshow below, write in the comments or on a piece of paper what you think poetry is.
Here's mine: Poetry is the laughter of children and the music of nature, calming the heart.
I am including some of my favorite poets and poems for children. If you love writing poetry on your own, I am also providing some different poetry formats for you to explore. I will bring plenty of poetry books for you to look at if you need help getting started. I will also lead you through several poetry writing exercises.
Here are some examples of different types of poems.
My favorite children's poet is Shel Silverstein. I will bring copies of his books to our workshop, but here are a few of my favorite poems you can read ahead if you have time. He'll make you laugh outloud. He started writing poetry when he was twelve years old and illustrated his poems himself. You might recognize some of his poetry books such as The Light in the Attic, Falling Up, and Where the Sidewalk Ends. I highly recommend them all!
Here are some of my favorite poems. Sick is my favorite Shel Silverstein poem.
Shel Silverstein used his poetry as lyrics for songs he composed music to. Music lyrics start as poems!
Jack Pretutsky is another favorite poet of mine.
I am looking forward to writing poetry with you soon.