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Lesson Plan: Photo Voice

“Casting Shadows” UMMA Teacher Workshop, December 6, 200 Lesson from Photo Voice by Kathryn Marks The name Photo Voice comes from Caroline Wang’s project of the same name. See Caroline Wang, Visual Voices, Yunnan, China, 1995

Objectives

Students will identify, document (photographically) and discuss issues that are important to their community.

National Core Art Standards

  • Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work
  • Analyze, interpret, and select artistic work for presentation
  • Synthesize and relate knowledge and personal experiences to make art 

Michigan Social Studies Standards

  • Use historical sources (photos, diaries, oral histories, artifacts, and video) to draw conclusions about life in the past
  • Use different descriptions of the same event in a community and explain how and why they are different

Grades

7-12

Time Required

Several class periods plus time outside of class

Materials

  • A selection of photographs for discussion
  • Cameras, one per group of 4 students
  • Project notepads (one per group)
  • Matboard or cardstock for presentation

Lesson

Select a number of photographs that represent life in a community. What kinds of impressions do we get?  What kinds of challenges might these people face? Do you think the photographic interpretation might be different if the photographer lived, or did not live, in the communities?

For this project, students will present an insider’s perspective on their community. Divide students into groups of 3 or 4 and have them brainstorm about issues that affect their school community.  Encourage them to come up with problems that they would like to see addressed. Record these in group notepads – these ideas will guide the selection of subjects to be photographed.

Each group will be given a camera to document their chosen subjects.  In a predetermined amount of time the groups will photograph places and people around the school that illustrate their chosen issues.  They should also keep their notepad with them to jot down thoughts, quotes, etc.  Remind them that it is okay for several groups to come up with the same subject. 

Print photographs.

Each group will create a display for their photographs after they have edited and selected the most successful images.  Photographs can be mounted on mat board or poster board in thematic groups.  Discuss the use of captions and/or titles.

After all of the groups have completed their displays, a presentation and debriefing session can occur.  The groups will share their issues and concerns with the class and compare/contrast all of the different approaches.  If an issue occurs more than once, it may be an especially significant issue. Photographs of similar subject matter can also be discussed and compared in terms of visual similarities and differences.  A discussion of how composition, color and lighting affect interpretation of the photographs can follow.

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Tags
Community — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:33 pm)
Issues — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:33 pm)
Lesson — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:34 pm)
Perspective — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:34 pm)
Photography — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:33 pm)
Point of view — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:34 pm)
Voice — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:34 pm)
Writing — by John Turner (October 14 2016 @ 2:33 pm)

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March 6, 2017 1:19 a.m.

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