So I was looking over my Integrated Technology Unit Plan, and I started wishing that I had written out detailed lessons for the project-based learning aspect of the unit, instead of just the introductory and guided practice lessons. To me, it’s really the core of the unit. Instead of going back and starting over, I decided to just make an example of the project my kids would be doing. I created it in Google Drawing (which I would have as one of several options for the kids to use), and I tried to make it look like a fourth grader made it. I purposely left out an important component* for which this hypothetical group would be docked points. Can you spot it?After they made this media message, the group would have to include a brief write-up about the components of their media message in COMPLETE SENTENCES (not that I am a stickler for complete sentences or anything, where did you get that idea?). For example:
- Our media message is visual because it includes images as well as text.
- Our target audience is teenagers. We tried to aim it at teenagers by using words like “dude” and celebrities that teenagers like such as famous basketball players. The style of the shoes is also more appealing to teenagers than to kids or adults.
- Our message is not entirely truthful, but it is because we want to sell our product. We want the teenagers to think that they will be faster if they wear our shoes. We also want them to think that they will be wearing the same shoes as a famous person.
- We drew attention to the product by using flashy colors and lines that look like electricity. We wanted to make the shoes look like they were full of energy!
The assessment of the media message and the write-up would be rubric-based, and I would probably create at least part of the rubric with the class. When I was student teaching, my mentor teacher created a rubric for a solar system poster by asking the kids what they thought were the important elements of a good poster- correct spelling, neat coloring, and a minimum number of facts were some of the suggestions that the kids volunteered.
That’s all for now- if I get a sudden burst of inspiration and/or motivation later on today, I may just go the whole hog and add a rubric too!
*This group forgot the name of the product! They did everything else beautifully, and would have probably been given full credit for those aspects of the rubric, but one of the things we would learn about in the unit is that in addition to slogans and pictures, media messages have to clearly state the product’s name so that it becomes familiar to the audience. Of course, if this unit and project were real, I would have watched their process along the way and probably mentioned to them that they were missing something- without giving away what it was. 🙂