Hands On – Creative Project – Media Photos

PhotographsViewing and Writing about Photos

from Around the World


Preliminary Activity:  Direct students to a website similar to 24 Hours in Pictures .  Let them explore the most recent photos, choose three of their favorites and write one sentence response/reaction to those three.

They can copy and paste the photo onto a Word document or PowerPoint slide and add their sentence as caption. Share results in class presentation or by posting on class website.

For an end of the year project in a creative writing class, ask students to pretend they are preparing a portfolio to submit as part of an application to an all expenses paid creative writing institute to be held this summer on your state college campus. The committee wants to see the quality and range of writing the applicants can do.  They ask the students to submit their original work in three different genres.  You, the teacher, are so proud of their work, you suggest the following assignment to generate writing students may decide to submit in that portfolio.

*  view photos on 24 Hours in Pictures taken on students’ own birth date.  Or, Library of Congress site and search for students’ own birth date.
* choose three and write about three different photos in three different genres. (One genre for each of three photos.) Consider a story, a poem, a dramatic scene in a movie or TV script, a pitch to use photo in advertising campaign, an essay of protest, or a news article.
* copy and include photo on final draft to be shared with class, posted on class website, and evaluated by teacher using Customized Six Traits Rubric created by student(s) doing the same genre.. Those writing poems customize rubric for poems.

Their creating the rubric gives them ownership, but also reminds them of qualities expected in effective and interesting writing.  For example, those students who are writing the same genre can meet and customize a Six-Traits© rubric for their genre.  In the CONTENT area add the minimum requirements. This will make grading easier for the teacher.

 *  For those writing poems consider the constraints of free verse or form with specific minimum elements of imagery, music (rhythm, rhyme, sound) and number of lines, say 14-16.

 *  For those writing short, short stories, include dialogue and traditional plot line; about how many words or pages. For example, 2-3 pages, 250-300 words.
 * For those writing a dramatic scene: How many characters? Include stage directions? Camera shots?  Props and/or sets? Lighting?
 * For those writing news articles – Lead paragraph that includes answers to who, what, when, where, why, and how?  Length 250-300 words?
* For those writing essays of protest or explanation: Introduction, body and conclusion that summarizes, reflects, or projects without introducing new ideas. What else?
 * For those writing an advertisement: Write a pitch to the company to use as the advertising agency. What is the product? Who is the audience? What is the slogan? What appeals? Why should customer buy product?  Where will ads be placed?

Click here for Handout Viewing and Writing about Photos

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