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Activities,  March 31, 2009

In Which Direction Is My Collection? - A YouthLearn Photo Editing and Web Design Project

A collection is more than simply a set of objects; the relationships among the objects tell a story. A story about a collection could be about things in your room, people in your community, hip-hop slang or ways to give directions. Because almost anything can fit into a collection, projects focusing on collections give you the flexibility to reinforce curriculum goals ranging from vocabulary, math, and science to art and technology.

In this project, kids decide on a topic, create or assemble a collection of information or items related to that topic, and build a Web page to show off the collection.

This example incorporates digital photography and photo editing to create a collection of imaginary road signs to reinforce vocabulary building and synonyms. Don't limit yourself to our topic, however. You can do the project with text alone, replace the photography module with one on computer drawing, or create a multimedia presentation as the end product instead of a Web page.

Why collections? Because everyone collects things, especially kids. From baseball cards to stamps, dolls to books, video games to funny-looking rocks, everyone knows the feeling of accomplishment one gets from putting together a comprehensive collection and searching for new additions. One of the most popular and important sites on the Internet, Yahoo!, actually began as a collection of links to other Internet sites. (It still is, to a large degree.)

Working on a collection-based project has another advantage, as well. All collections follow some kind of model or template, even if it's just a definition of what kinds of things fit into the collection. Kids master skills and knowledge only through reinforcement and practice, but that usually becomes boring. A project on developing a collection that kids care about provides a platform that makes repetition fun.

Posted by wrivenburgh on March 31, 2009 | Activities