Tag Archive for Image Analysis

History Pin: Classroom Ideas

History Pin first caught my eye when Richard Byrne highlighted it on his website Free Technology for Teachers.  Now I know I’m an English teacher and that I should be able to articulate, in great detail, the coolness of History Pin.

iStockphoto.com

Unfortunately, I can’t.  It’s just cool.  Exploring History Pin requires little more than the ability to get on the website.  The concept is simple really.  Anyone with a Gmail account can pin photos to a specific geographic location.  With each pinned photo is the opportunity to add a “story” on the photo itself.  With modern Google street view as the backdrop, photos appear in the spot where they were originally taken.  The effect is remarkable.  It makes a much better argument than I ever could about history, the human experience and the passage of time.  History Pin’s overview video is a good place to start with your students when beginning any project involving the website.

What’s particularly intriguing is the idea, in their words, of creating a digital history of the world. Easy to navigate, the website offers several different classroom uses. Because students can search their own streets and towns, it is an interesting way to teach about the art of stories via image.   History Pin offers a variety of resources for getting started.  Check out their resources so that you can easily familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of the website.

1.  Use it as a means to explore time periods that accompany literary units. Now that the National Archives and the Smithsonian have partnered with History Pin there many options for how this can be accomplished.  Listed below are some collections/tours that can be easily implemented in your classroom.  Have students annotate the images and use them to create arguments about literature’s place within the society it represents as well as today.

2.  Use History Pin as a means for students to begin constructing their own narratives or college essays.

  • Since students struggle with creating their own authorial voice, ask that they begin by creating a History Pin tour of their own focused on one particular theme (i.e. the role of family, nostalgia, education, disappointments, triumphs).  Each photo should reflect the theme that they are creating.
  • When they create the accompanying “stories” for each photo have them treat each as if they are the opening paragraph of their college essay or personal narrative.  They should not just be a basic summary of the photo itself.  Use our previous post about personal narratives to offer some professional models before you begin.

“Best of” Lists: Photos

iStockphoto.com

It’s no secret how much we love using images to teach students about arguments.  Over the last several months we posted about image analysis, advertisements, and our favorite image resources from the National Archives and Library of Congress. While images can’t replace text, they can engage even the most reluctant students.

We would be remiss in our discussion of annual Best of 2011 lists if we didn’t show you some of the best images of the past year.   Today’s resources will give you a starting point as you look towards implementing image resources in your class

The Big Picture

As a basic classroom resource for teaching students how to annotate images, this photo blog is invaluable.  However, as 2011 comes to a close, they have assembled three different image collections all under the title The Year in Pictures.  You will have to sift through the images in each collection to find useful resources but the time you invest is well worth it.

Weekend Pop Culture: Starbucks and Create Jobs for America

So I was in Starbucks this week.  Actually I’m in Starbucks every week.  It’s somewhat dismaying and comforting that the woman behind the counter sees my car pull up and starts making my drink.  Anyway, as I was waiting, I noticed that among the “freebies” was an infographic on newsprint about creating sustainable jobs.  I couldn’t help it.  I took one of the pamphlets and put it in my purse.  As a result, I’ve been engrossed by the coverage of this topic for the entirety of this week.

Create Jobs for USA is a partnership between Starbucks and the Opportunity Finance Network to create and sustain jobs.  They work with a microfinance corporation that lends to small businesses that are in need.  And while, it’s interesting that a corporation like Starbucks is donating 5 million towards this initiative and having customers donate too, but let’s get back to the marketing.

The infograhic is a remarkable source for classroom exercises.  Think: image analysis, language analysis and evaluating argument.  The good news?  If you don’t frequent Starbucks or don’t want to be seen taking the pamphlets out of the store by the “purseful” some of the best graphics are available online at the Create Jobs for USA website.  Today we’ll start by looking at the language/images of the organization itself.  Tomorrow we’ll examine the media blitz that surrounded the initiative.

For the “panels” below determine if you’ll project them or have students works individually or in small groups to examine, assess and respond. These are only two examples of what you could use check the website to find others.

Create Jobs “Infographics”

Infographic Panel-Visibly Indivisible

Questions to pose for discussion or short response:

  1. Discuss the use of the phrase “visibly indivisible.”  What is the connotation?  Why employ this “play on words” mimicking the pledge of Allegiance?
  2. Annotate the image.  Pay particular attention to the primary focus on blue/white.  Explain why the “visibly indivisible is in read and placed on top of the flag itself.
  3. Read the paragraph on the right.  Explain the effect of repeating “we.”

Infographic Panel-9.1% of the U.S. Labor Force are Unemployed

 

Questions to pose for discussion or short response:

  1. What is implied by both the size and placement of 9.1?
  2. Examine the color scheme and image choices.  What impact do they make on the argument you identified above?
  3. In the paragraph, discuss the repetition of the word number.  Explain the impact on both purpose and audience.
Create Jobs for USA Advertisement
Similar to the “infographics” the advertisement is brief and relies primarily on graphics and succinct text.

Questions to pose for discussion or short response:

  1. Listen carefully to the music used.  What is its purpose?  When is there a shift in the soundtrack and how does it reflect the tone of the advertisement?
  2. What is the impact of no narration or dialogue?  What is the purpose in those omissions?
  3. What images, statistics or language stands out to you the most?  Explain your reasoning and describe the effect.