13 June 2011

Symbol Illustration

This post is part of my project to get rid of papers I haven't looked at in forever (but still contain good ideas) by making them 'digital' here.
The symbol illustration idea is from a course I took in graduate school on teaching literacy to (mostly elementary) English-language learners. It seemed to me an idea easily adapted to various situations, content, and levels.

  • colored paper
  • scissors
  • markers
After reading and discussing some type of literature together (in my course it was Esperanza Rising),
  1. Decide what you think is the most important object in the book.
  2. Cut a large sheet of colored paper into the shape of that object.
  3. In the middle of the object, write a sentence describing why you think that was the most important object.
  4. In the rest of the space, draw other important objects, with a sentence under each that describes its importance.
My symbol illustration of Esperanza Rising:
Some variations:
Ask for an oral presentation of the symbol illustration when it is finished.
Make the illustration a timeline instead - on a long sheet of paper, draw a line horizontally in the middle. Above, put positive symbols. Below, put negative symbols. All should be sequential and should be used to retell the story emphasizing mood changes.
Ask students to choose a symbol that may also symbolize something in their life and describe this.
Use VoiceThread or other storyboarding or digital storytelling tools to make this project digital/paperless.

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