This thread will be about reflections on “Design Matters” and practices in my classroom. Before looking forward on what I need to change, I wanted to look at my current practices to see what is working, and what needs adjustment.
First, I am teaching my students about design:
This has already been shown to sixth graders in advance of their work on their movies
I also give my students constraints, as in this project where they were limited to one picture (they tend to put up a whole album of pictures, wordiness is not yet a problem in general).
I also had them do planning before they could shoot their videos. I gave them a story board template to work with and reviewed what they came up with. Looking back, I did not do enough review of the story board plans.
Going forward. Probably a more deliberative effort in design, and I really need to jettison the PowerPoint templates a lot more. I’ve narrowed them down, and eliminated them in many projects but they need to be gone, especially the bullet points.
One thing I’m already implementing is adding images to the blogs every single week. I was lazy about that at the beginning of the school year. Now, I pick out an image for the week in Flickr, etc. and have one ready to go. I’ve blogged about this in more detail here.
That’s a small thing, what is the big picture? What big ideas will I be teaching. I think there are two things I need to do. One is like sentence lifting. When I have a good example of visual literacy (either in an image I provide or something they design) the class needs to discuss explicitly why it works. They need projects to try this out. Most of my projects lately have been writing, or audio, not visual.