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Lesson Plans

Re: children's book illustrations & design

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Sandra Hildreth (shildret)
Wed, 24 Jun 1998 23:40:23 -0400

I just finished a final project for a high school Humanities course
(C.L.A.S.S.) that had students creating an original children's book
about a specific period in American history. I introduced the project by
bringing in a big variety of good children's books and actually read a
history related one to them (they enjoyed it). Then I put them into
collaborative pairs, and had each pair read and analyze a book. They
looked at how much text and what size it was on each page, what media
and style the illustrations were done in and how much of the page they
took up, etc. When we discussed it afterwards, they came to the
conclusion that children's books have lots of illustrations, limited
text (on an elementary reading level) and that the pictures helped tell
the story. I find it much more effective to allow them to "discover"
this themselves - rather than me lecturing them on it. Then we
brainstormed a list of topics from American history and encouraged them
to select one they had good notes on from class. It wasn't intended for
them to have to do a lot of research, but to demonstrate what they
already had learned. I provided an outline form for them to plan their
ideas on, which had to be turned in and approved before they started,
and then a storyboard form in which they planned what text and what
illustration would go on each page. They then worked individually on
their books, using 12x18 drawing paper, minimum 10 pages, any media,
printing out text in a large font on the computer and gluing it to
pages, had to include at least 10 accurate historical facts, had to have
a story with a beginning, body, and conclusion, and had to include
something on the cover related to actual artwork of the time period
their book was about. And an "about the author" paragraph and picture on
the last page. I laminated and bound the best of them and will leave
them in our elementary library. I think I would like to create a simple
evaluation form and ask some elementary children to "review" these books
at the beginning of the school year next year.
Sandra Hildreth
C.L.A.S.S. (Cultural Literacy through Art & Social Studies)
Art 7-12, Madrid-Waddington Central School, Madrid, NY 13660
Art Methods, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY 13617