What is Photovoice?
Photovoice was developed by Caroline C. Wang, professor at University of Michigan, and Mary Ann Burris, program officer for women’s health at the Ford Foundation. Photovoice was developed to be “participatory photography for social change.” It was originally developed to empower marginalized communities.
In the classroom, Photovoice is a strategy that can be used in the classroom to empower students by connecting their home lives with their school lives. With this tool, students can express an idea or share their community through photographs and online. Students represent their communities or express their points of view by taking photos, discussing them together and developing narratives to go with the photos.
What is a blog?
A blog is a website published online that includes information or discussion. They usually have interactive features such as commenting and adding links by users. Blogs can be another space for discussion that can build the classroom community and allow students to have control over the topics they are discussing and to work together to make meaning and connections.
Why you want to use them:
Photovoice is a technique that can be used in the classroom to have students respond to a prompt in a meaningful way through taking photos, reflecting on the meaning behind their photos, and sharing them to find common themes. This strategy is great for all classrooms, and can be easily scaffolded for with learners of varying needs.
Here are the steps to using this strategy in your class:
1. What is your content objective?
What is the essential question? What is the learning target? Photovoice is a great way to connect a concept in your content area with their personal lives. For example, if you are teaching different angles or geometric shapes in a math class, you could ask students to find those shapes in their communities.
2. Align with an activity type that makes a good use of the technology.
Some activity types that would be great for this strategy would be literature circles, seminar discussion, reading discussions, descriptive/critical analysis, sharing/collaborating, and publishing.
3. How to scaffold this form of technology: teach students how to write a blog post and comment.
4. Learn how to set up a blog
Blogs are usually pretty straight forward to set up- much like setting up an email account. You can use Blogger, WordPress or Live Journal for as publishing tools for your blogs. Many of these site have templates you can use to streamline the structure of your blog.
Here is a link to a strategy guide on how to teach a class on how to create a blog.
5. Things to remember/look out for.
Classroom management implications:
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