Apparently I like to do things last minute these days (or all the time if you ask my husband). As the school days dwindle before Winter Break begins, I wondered if I should have my students make gifts for their parents. Remember, this is my first year out of the classroom, so I still like to do “normal” classroom activities from time to time. However, I had to come up with something that my 1st -6th graders could do and it be ok across the board. The 60+ students on my roster also created a challenge for me in regards to what I envisioned because of the cost involved. So what started as a simple tweet to crowdsource ideas yesterday morning turned into my parent present – photo booth photos.
I employed the use of my Smartboard and a fancy red blanket to create my “Photo Booth”. I brought as many cold weather accessories I could find at home, as well as a few fun props borrowed from our principal, and #collaboreyes shades!! Since I work with ELLs, I had to activate prior knowledge about a photo booth. Only a few knew what it was when I said the words. Once I described it, most commonly within a mall, a few more seemed to understand. I modeled how the students would stand in front of the “backdrop” and would be given the chance to have 4 photos taken, much like a photo booth. Once I acted like a goof for them, they became more excited about the photos.
My first group of 1st graders changed their “outfits” for each picture and made wide grins. As the day progressed and the various grades had their photo opp, I noticed more of the students showing how self-conscious they were of taking photos. The switch started to become more apparent in 4th grade. From there, I had to practically cajole my 5th and 6th graders to pose. Fortunately, I have created a great relationship with these students that they bought it!
So 200+ photos later, our Photo Booth was a success!! I just uploaded all of the photos and created simple collage greeting cards with the four photos (thanks to Wal-Mart for the quick print turnaround). I still want the kids to personalize theirs a bit more, so we’ll create some embellishments tomorrow.
A big thank you to Gwyneth Jones for the idea that combined an #ISTE11 favorite – the photo booth – and a parent present to commemorate their school year.
What gifts did your students create this year??