How to TAKE IT UP A NOTCH with Self-Portraits

By |2018-07-18T11:42:55-07:00April 18th, 2018|

Teachers all over the world have students draw self-portraits all the time, but have you ever wondered if there is a way to take the learning up a notch?  Why should we use self-portraits in a fluffy way when there is so much potential for deep learning there?

In today’s episode of Teaching with Creativity, I’m going to help you see why and how you can use self-portraits on a deeper level with students.  I will share 4 really great reasons to use self-portraits. Plus, I’ll walk you through 5 examples of different kinds of self-portraits students can make with ideas to integrate math and English language arts.  I promise – this will change how you think about using self-portraits in your classroom.

This is a great episode for any teacher who has ever used (or thought about using) self-portraits in the classroom.  As an art teacher with a regular classroom teaching background, I know that there is ZERO time for fluff in instruction. These ideas will help you weed out the fluff and TAKE IT UP A NOTCH with self-portraits.  Let’s do this!

 

Teachers all over the world have students draw pictures of themselves all the time, but have you ever wondered if there is a way to take the learning up a notch?

In today’s episode of Teaching with Creativity, we’re talking about the why and how of using self-portraits on a deeper level with students.

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EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

INTRO

Hello and welcome to Season Two of our show, Teaching with Creativity.  I’m your host for today’s show, Amanda Koonlaba, content specialist at educationcloset.com– your digital learning hub for arts integration and STEAM.  I’m so glad you’re here!

Today we’re going to be talking about the why and how of having students create self-portraits in your classrooms. Now, I’m going to share a few self-portrait lesson ideas, but I also want to share a few reasons why it is so great to have students create self-portraits. Additionally, I’d like to give you a few ideas of what students can do with self-portraits to integrate other content and learning.

The reason I wanted to share these things about self-portraits is because I know teachers all over the world have students draw pictures of themselves all the time. A lot of times I see teachers using it as a first day of school activity or some other fluffy activity. My question, though, is why should we use self-portraits in a fluffy way when there is so much potential for deep learning there?

Okay. So, let me be just a bit more structured. First, we are going to talk about why students should be creating self-portraits in our classrooms. Then, we will talk about a few different ways students can create self-portraits. Finally, we will talk about integrating some other content standards with the creation of self-portraits.

So, let’s go ahead and talk about a few reasons why creating self-portraits is important for students.

4 REASONS SELF-PORTRAITS ARE IMPORTANT

First, self-portraits are, by nature, introspective. If educators want their students to get to that point of self-efficacy, or the point of having hope that they can change their circumstances if they choose to do so, then we have to teach them to be introspective.

Now, artists often use self-portraits as a way of expressing various aspects of themselves and their identities beyond the surface of their physical appearance. This gets into the use of symbolism. Students can create a self-portrait using symbolism to communicate who they are as an individual. I love to link this concept of visual symbolism to theme, main idea, and details. I’ll show you an example of that in just a moment.

Another reason students should create self-portraits is that the concept works for all ages. A kindergartener can create a self-portrait and so can a senior in high school.

Finally, self-portraits integrate well with other content. There are mathematical concepts to creating self-portraits as well as ELA concepts.

That will move us into the next part of this vodcast. But, let’s just recap quickly.

Four reasons to use self-portraits in the classroom are:

  1. Self-portraits are introspective.
  2. Self-portraits allow students to express their identities.
  3. Self-portraits work ac