So yes, that’s a new term that I just made up, but I think it fits. In this post I want to introduce a few apps that you can use in combination with photography to help your students build their vocabulary (and freedom of expression) through a visual means.
Wordfoto snd Typedrawing are apps that allow you to use a photo and apply phrases or words of your choosing to create a piece of art. The concept behind this is to have the students take a photo of themselves (or something meaningful to them) and use words or short phrases to describe the photo. Upon entering the words or phrases, these programs overlay them onto the photo.
I think that this is a fun, expressive and creative way for teachers in any discipline to have students visually express themselves or display their understanding of a given topic. Below are a couple of very quick examples of how they can be used in the various subject areas, as well as an example:
Math/Geometry: take a photo of a court words to describe the types of angles and shapes present. Economics: take a photo of a foreclosed house and overlay words to describe the market crash. Social Studies/Political Science: take a photo of scale or gavel and overlay words to describe the student’s impression of the justice system. ELA: students can take a photo based on the “word of the day” and include synonyms Phys Ed: take photos of sports or exercises and use term/phrases to describe the activity Music: take a photo of a student in front of an empty instrument case and words to describe the decline of music appreciation in some educational systems. Science: photos of lab equipment and phrases/words used to describe their typical uses
Now these are fairly straight forward examples, but they can be as involved and introspective as your imagination will allow. All the while, students are engaged in composing the appropriate photograph to go along with the phrases and words that they choose.
Now get out there and try i, and lemme know what you come up with.
Below, you will find a list of the apps and gadgets that I find most helpful in the pursuit of iPhoneography, both in the classroom and outside.
comicstrip, storyrobe, motivation, sonicpics, story kit, ruler phone, protractor, iMicroscope, SciSpy, word lens, flashcard creator, quick mark. Skype, and sekai camera. These apps can be used for anything from storytelling and slideshows to measurements and scavenger hunts.
hipstamtic, instagram, camera+, pano, 100 cameras in 1, geotag photos, breadcrumbs, mover+, and photosync.
iphone microscope: Amazon ($3)
wide angle and macro lenses for iphone ($40/set)
telephoto lens for iPhone ($35)
Owle Bubo iPhone harness ($169)
So, earlier today while presenting at iSummit in Nasville, TN we were working on a photo project of capturing the alphabet as they exist in nature. (No manipulating things or using software to enhance the photos). It’s basically an exercise in training your eye and being more observant and aware of your surroundings. In the past, this has proven to be an excellent activity for students. It’s a very creative and fun activity to do with your students, as well as being one that can be done several times while adding additional elements.
Toward the end of the class, I introduced the idea of photography scrabble to the attendees. Basically, the idea is for student to perform the alphabet project, and then use the letters that they have to play a game of scrabble. (If you’re familiar with jeopardy being played via keynote or powerpoint, this is a similar concept). All letters should be preapproved for use by the teacher, and the students can only use letters that they have in their “rack.” (Once they’ve run out of As or Bs, they can’t use those letters to spell any longer). I think this is a great idea to influence vocabulary and creativity in education through photgraphy.
If you’d like more info, or want to try it for yourself, please do and let me know about your results. I can’t wait to do it with my students!