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Keywords: Writing, Photography, Artwork, composition, architecture
Subject(s): Art, Journalism, Photography
Grades 10 through 12
Original Author: Nancy Baack, Glidden
Lesson Summary:
High school students in grades 10, 11, and 12 will use digital cameras to document our rural Iowa farm community through the use of photographs, artwork and writing. The photographs will be used as resources for personal original student artwork and also in a “community tribute” book. Finished projects will be displayed in tandem with the book at the local library for the community to enjoy. Students will write essays to explain and express their views of life in this town at this point in history.

This assignment will help them to visually appreciate their surroundings, the history of their community and to debate the benefits and challenges of growing up in rural Iowa in the early 21st century.

Learning Objectives

Students will :

- Learn about the history of their community and appreciate the historical and visual significance of various landmarks and architecture.
- Learn to take digital photographs
- Learn to use Tool Factory Workshop and/or MultiMedia Lab V
- Develop their compositional skills as they use the photos as resources for personal artworks
- Expand upon original ideas with creative artworks and writings
- Experience personal growth and appreciation for where they live by sharing writings and creations with community members in a gallery showing at the local library, a hub of the community.

Lesson Introduction

We will begin with a discussion of our community and what we already know . We will then take a walking tour of our small community, led by a long-time native with many stories to share. We will take photos as we go, highlighting interesting architecture, important places from the past and compositionally intriguing details.

Lesson Activities

We will then print out photos, survey our results and divide various subject matter into teams of at least two. These students will then do two things:

1) Using Tool Factory Workshop, the photographs they and the class have taken and their writings, students will develop a page for the community book we will be publishing.

2) Students will create a personal artwork dealing with the subject matter from the book page, using the photographs as resources for that work. All items will be displayed together at our local library.

Materials: Digital SLR, Word Processor, xD Memory Cards
Other Items: Photo paper for photos and book pages, $100 each
Printer Ink, $200 each
3 Memory Cards, $25 each, total of $75.00
Lithium batteries, $50 each
Cover paper for books, $20 each
Library Gallery Reception supplies, $50 each