Objective: Students will be given an old photograph and be asked to write in the "voice" of the person within the photograph. As with many writing activities students would need to have this modeled and then gradually expand the writing to where they could do it on their own.
Materials: There are many possibilities but I will use as an example the photograph by Todd Webb entitled
LaSalle at Amsterdam, New York, 1946,
Introducing the lesson: This writing assignment would occur after a discussion of the photo as was done earlier in this unit. Then we would talk about "voice". In writing voice is the underlying component of the whole process. Without it the writing will fall flat and uninteresting. It is the same in a photo. Voice is the imprint of the artist on the photograph. It is what lets us know that we are reading their story or looking at one of their pictures.
1. Look again at the photograph:
LaSalle at Amsterdam, New York, 1946
by Todd Webb.
What is the voice in this photo? Hopefully students would be led to see that the voice comes from the joy and happiness of the children as they dance delightedly under the cascading water.
2. Each child should imagine that they are one of the children in the circle. If necessary have students stand and hold hands in a circle and rotate about. Whose hand are you holding and what is it like as you circle around.
3. We might talk about what it is like in the summer on one of those hot days. How do you feel? What is it like when cool water touches your skin?
4. For special ed. And second language learners it might be advisable to list vocabulary words students might have trouble spelling.
5. Have students imagine that they are one of the children in that photo. They can write a description of what it feels like to be under that water and being part of that circle.
Closure of the lesson: Students can share their writings and post them on a display around a copy of Todd Webb's photo.