Ten Thousand Words

I’m starting to realize just how important the digital camera is to an elementary classroom.  It might just be more important than pencils.  Well, maybe not… but you know what I’m saying.

“One picture is worth ten thousand words.” – Chinese proverb

If that philosopher was still around today, I’m sure he’d have a digital camera in his hands.

Children love taking pictures as much as they love being in them.   Allowing students access to a digital camera throughout their day can help them document their world from their perspective—and it’s amazing what you will find when you look through their camera roll!

Here are some ways to utilize this fabulous tool in your classroom!

  • To showcase learning – Ask your students to take pictures of all the nouns, geometric shapes, etc. they can find in the classroom—or even the whole school!
  • To share with the world – Share on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram—or your classroom PhotoBucket account.
  • To track progress – Take “before,”  “during,” and “after” pictures during a long-term project.  This proves to students how much progress they’ve made!  Use “before” photos for self-reflection during a student-led conference to show where they used to be with a particular skill.
  • To “save” a project or capture a thought – How many times do you have to say, “Time to put away the blocks, puzzle, etc.”?  Capture their creation with a digital photo and your students will be much happier to clean up!
  • To practice observation and understand perspective – Task a student with being the class photographer for the week.  See what he or she thinks is interesting enough to capture on camera.  You’ll be surprised at what activities and lessons are included!

Happy picture-taking!

Learner, Thinker, Writer, and Photographer: Kathy Bruyn serves Trinity School as a Second Grade teacher.  You can follow her on Twitter @KathyEE96.

4 thoughts on “Ten Thousand Words

  1. This is so, so true, Kathy! I love your ideas for ways to use this tool in the classroom. Last Spring at the iPad Summit, many educators there stated that the camera was the most important part of the iPad– more than any app they had! Great post!

  2. I love the idea of assigning a class photographer! I’d love the extra help photographing students as they work through their art from beginning to end.

  3. Maryellen Berry

    I also like to think of an assistant teacher/teacher as the camera in the classroom, observing the progress of students and the unique aspects of their personalities.

  4. Absolutely, Maryellen. We are so lucky to have so many eyes on our children as they grow!

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