Based on Images

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2 thoughts on “Based on Images”

  1. Yes it sounds good! I decided to bypass OWI this semester and start out with individual characters. I gave them a drawing day a couple weeks ago. You are right! Such excitement for them to draw, color and chat amongst themselves.

    I can’t tell you what else we have been doing besides the characters since my mind is a big ole sieve. Oh yeah, we have been doing March Madness (music contest…they are wild about it!). In the 2 groups that had the drawing day, engagement is off the charts when I pull out my folder and pick a random character to be our “star of the day.” For the first one I asked if there were 1) volunteers who really wanted theirs to be first for class intro and 2) anyone who did not want theirs to be featured. Nobody raised their hand for #2.

    We’ve introduced 3-4 characters per group. One group, a *difficult to rein in* group because it’s too small and at the end of the day…gets SO EXCITED to do the characters! I have to use strict Jon Cowart “stop and jot” along with dictation and Write n Discuss otherwise there would be no L2 because they are just too excited to talk about their characters.

    I’d love advice! Should we do a story with a couple of the ones we “know” or do I ensure we introduce all the characters first so that each student is seen and heard? I’m leaning toward taking the cue from the class, but if there is a compelling reason to do one over the other, I am all ears.

    I’m eager to get the gallery going. The day they drew, we put them all up since they were DYING TO SEE EVERYTHING. Then I put them all in a folder and am taking them out as we chat about them.

  2. Jen this is a long passage from my new book that talks about how I envisage the process of picking drawings:

    How to Choose Characters to be in a Story

    Note that some drawings are not very compelling. The drawing may be good, but the information provided on the back doesn’t gel to form an interesting character. Or the drawing is bad but the information is good. Or both are bad. Don’t use them. When deciding which of all the individually created images to use and possibly take on an entire journey around the Star as explained below, we want to pick images according to how many points they can accrue. How does that work?

    When you get your first drawings, stand in front of class, discuss each one in English, point out the good things you like about each one and read the back-of-the-page descriptors to the class. Skip the bad drawings since it embarrasses the student who drew it. Keeping the focus on the art, teach them the value of good art and thoughtful back-of-the-page descriptors.

    Then inform the class that they will be choosing the image for class each day according to how many points each image can get. Here is the process:

    1. Holding the stack of drawings in your hand, ask the students to get into groups of two.
    2. Give a drawing to each group, one for each pair. Do not give a student pair their own drawing to evaluate.
    3. Ask each pair to rate the drawing they have by awarding up to a total of 4 points for the art work and 6 for the back of the page information. Obviously, a well-drawn and highly imaginative character would get 4 points for, on the drawing, bold lines, excellent colors and other simple details, and 6 points for the back-of-the-page information, depending mainly on two factors: (1) how imaginative it is, and (2) how cohesive the character is.
    4. Once each pair has given a score to the two drawings you gave them, they choose one drawing and find another student pair to meet with. Comparing drawings, the group of four chooses one drawing to advance.
    5. Once the group of four has decided on the best of the four drawings, the students form groups of eight and the best of the two brought into that bigger group is chosen.
    6. The same process of elimination happens in the next group of sixteen students – only one drawing is chosen.
    7. This process continues until there are two drawings left. So a class of 32 students would, in two groups of sixteen, give them both to you.
    8. At this point, the class arrives at the Great Deciding Moment, described here:

    The Great Deciding Moment

    The Great Deciding Moment comes when you are standing in front of class with the two finalists in the scoring process just described. Of course, you already got a look at all the drawings before you handed them out, so you have your own favorites.

    But sometimes two drawings make it to the finals that you never really considered as all that great. No matter, just stand there with a drawing in each hand and look them over. Let the drama build while you choose. Read out the prompt responses while they look at the images. Once you’ve chosen, put both drawings behind your back. Ask for a drum roll. Bring out the winner to a round of applause and point to the students who drew both drawings proudly as the class applauds.

    They didn’t win a car; they did something better – they received the approval of their peers and teacher. In a world where the only way to do that is by scoring high on a test, it’s got to be an exceptional feeling for a child to have their drawing selected. It sets the tone for a good tableau or story.

    When you use this process to choose what individually created images you will work with in this Category B process that day, no one is resentful that their drawing wasn’t chosen, and kids who think that a mediocre effort has a place in your classroom are given something to think about.

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