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"A Portrait of Success" Elementary Student Portfolio Building

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Keywords: Portfolio Development
Subject(s): Writing, Photography, English/Language Arts
Grades K through 4
Original Author: Dawn Fisher, Catasauqua
The Catasauqua Area School District will use the Classroom Grant for its elementary gifted enrichment program to assist in integrating digital imaging in the curriculum. Each gifted enrichment student at Sheckler Elementary School will create a portfolio of his work including samples of products, documentation (both in written form and digital photography) of the study process, and digital photos of and written self-reflection on completed independent and group products. These product samples, photos and reflections will show growth in the learning process over the course of a single year.

The use of Tool Factory Workshop program will be available which provides a kid friendly Word processor, Spreadsheet, Database, Painter, Administrator, and Bank Manager. It will be configured to the age level or learning ability of any student, not just for the gifted students.

The cover of the portfolio, entitled "A Portrait of Success", will include a drawing of a digital camera, or other camera from history, on the front cover. A digital image of the student (taken at the end of the year) will be placed in the lens area of the camera. A second digital image of the student from the beginning of the year will be placed inside the front cover to show physical growth over time.

Each student will receive instruction on how to operate the digital camera. On the Olympus website, they offer free online training for the students and instructor (http://olympusdigitalschool.com/cameras/d-series/d-540_zoom/index.html).This will allow the students to become acquainted with the camera during their free time, at home or at school. Instruction will also include development of skills in composition, downloading images, editing images, and incorporating images into other products.

Each student participates in a minimum of two research projects during the course of the year. Each student is required to follow a research process with steps including choosing a topic, making a plan for a final product, researching the topic and taking notes, making and editing the project, and presenting and evaluating the project.

Products range from experiments to exhibits, performances to pamphlets, three-dimensional art to debates, and book authoring to audiotapes. Students may use the digital camera at any time for the development of their product. Each student will be required to complete a self-reflection sheet of the study including digit photos of at least two steps in the process and the final product and a written response to several questions which ask them to reflect on the process. Many of these products are either three-dimensional or ephemeral in nature. Digit photography is a wonderful, creative, and fun opportunity for students to document their academic and creative efforts.
Materials: Word Processor, Flash/USB Drives, Batteries, Camera Bags, Point and Shoot, Slideshow
Other Items: 4 Ni-Mh quick charger & battery set (B-90SU), $49.95 each, total of $199.80
3 XD Picture Card (128mb), $29.99 each, total of $89.97
5 Cartridges: color, $17.45 each, total of $87.25
5 Cartridges: Black, $14.89 each, total of $74.45
3 Printers: HP 3845, $62.48 each, total of $187.44
4 Lithium Ion Rechargeable Battery (LI-12B), $49.95 each, total of $199.80
Associated File: 3898.kid