Middle school photography club

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by teachflute, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. teachflute

    teachflute TPF Noob!

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    I would like some opinions. I am a middle school teacher and my students would like me to be an advisor to a photography club. I am very much an amateur. I have taken a few classes and have a love for photography. I have some ideas about things I would like to focus on with them, but I would love to hear your opinions on some activities I can do with them.
     
  2. bla

    bla TPF Noob!

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    Photojournalism project!!! I always used to love those back in secondary school. I've always thought that it was great for learning about composition.

    Otherwise, maybe taking pictures of passing cars to learn about exposure? Some night time shots?
     
  3. Portrait work, and photojournalism. Most people primarily deal with photography to capture images of loved ones, and special events. you should have two distinct projects: taking pictures of a family member or two, possibly in an environment that reflects who they are. The other is documenting a special event - some town fair or parade, or graduation, a birthday party, whatever is easy to have access to.

    You could have two slide shows during the school term - one of good portraits, one of good event photography. You can google the images - everything from a good (non-posed) wedding shot to the shooting of Lee Harvey Oswald as he left the police station.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Teach them not to always centre the subject...and that on-camera flash is terrible. Then they will know more than most people :lol:

    Maybe find a good beginners book, like 'Understanding Exposure'...or something like that. Maybe use it as a loose lesson plan of sorts. It may not be good to overwhelm them with too much info...but just let them know that there is a lot of stuff to learn...if they are interested. On the other side of things...they probably just want to go out and shoot...so giving them assignments would be great.
     
  5. xfloggingkylex

    xfloggingkylex TPF Noob!

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    a good project to do, but can be costly if you are using film, is to do "a day in the life of" where they take photo's of themselves or what they did during the day. It can be simply things like a picture of an alarm clock, or a bowl of cereal in the morning, but the idea is to have the kids share a typical day for them through a handful of pictures.

    another good project would be to take your name, and for every letter of your name take a picture of something that starts with that letter. For example, my name is Kyle, so I could take a picture of a Keychain, a yo-yo (Y is hard), a lightbulb, and an earing (just to name a few common items). Try to encourage more than snapshots.

    really any kind of story telling or other project that requires a series of pictures is fairly easy to do. If you are trying to get these kids to learn better composition and exposure type issues, then you'll probably want something a little more sophisticated, something like "how many different ways can you photogragh _______" and they can take pictures from different perspectives of the same subject. A great example of this would be any form of moving water (for shutter speeds), or for composition, a tree. They can take a picture of a tree from far back, or they can get underneath the tree, hold the camera at the base of the tree and shoot up the trunk, stand a little ways away and take a picture from a "bugs perspective"... crazy things like that.
     
  6. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    Depth of field with f-stop. And lunar photography (based upon the number of people here asking questions on how to shoot the moon).
     
  7. skoundrel

    skoundrel TPF Noob!

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    for middleschool kids? I think you should encourage them to frame their shots most importantly (no more point and shoot!) I doubt a middle school class would fully understand and APPLY depth of field. Personally i find that lunar photography seems to me to be more of trial and error than dealing with basic photography principles...just my opinion
     
  8. kemplefan

    kemplefan TPF Noob!

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    as a middle school kid in a club like what you want to do i would recomend doing everything digitatal first- stating the obvious
    i would get school event/ sports teams
    go of of what people know and dont know
    people teaching echouther and themselves = hapines and some cool pictures
     
  9. Groupcaptainbonzo

    Groupcaptainbonzo TPF Noob!

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    You sound eminantly qualified..

    You really need to concentrate on their imagination, Technique and technicals are fine, But at that age everyone is trying hard to stifel their individuality. (I know that is what I experienced). Do all / any of the things that have been mentioned, Also My art teacher used to end the lesson with a word. The next week we would have to draw that word having had all week to think about what it meant to US. an excersise that is everybit as useful at developing a skill with a camera as it is with paint.
     

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