Self Superhero Lesson Plan

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Super hero comic drawing!


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Self Superhero</strong>

Grade Level: 6-8
Time Needed: 4 Days

Focus: The focus of this lesson plan is to address media literacy in today's society particularly focusing on comic book superheroes.

a) Develop and artistic statement, including how audience and occasion influence creative choices (
b) Analyze and interpret a variety of media artworks using established criteria (
c) Demonstrate use of a variety of tools, materials and techniques in media arts based on the characteristics of the hardware and software (

Motivational Resources
Youtube videos:

Click here for a link to the full Powerpoint

Art Materials
Paper (for sketches)
Flashdrives (4. Students assigned to certain flashdrive)
Wacom tablet (one for each student if available)
Computers with Photoshop
Scanner (if tablets are not available)

Introduction to Lesson:
The media is one of the strongest influences on our society. No matter how hard we may try, we cannot escape today's media culture. Media literacy is a way to help students control the interpretation of what they see and hear. Media literacy is the ability to analyze the messages presented to us in everyday life and in today's digital world. Technology is all around us but using it and understanding it are to very different meanings that need to be addressed in today's world. Being media literate is about being able to notice what is or is not there. It is the instinct to question a production's motives and values and to be aware of how these factors influence content. There are important questions to think about when viewing an advertisement like: how did they capture my attention?, who is the message intended for?, whose voices are or are not heard?, etc. Media literacy is not about having the right answers. It is about asking the right questions.
One of the greatest examples to use for understanding media literacy in our culture is "Iconic Superheroes" and the huge influence they can have on many people. The superhero iconic image has been a part of our culture, ever since the first superhero, Superman was created in 1938. Within its context and history, superheroes are used for commenting on social and political issues as well as been known to reveal idealized popular values within the western culture (Superhero, 2010). The superhero image over the years has evolved widely through pop culture and the media. In the United States today, superhero movies have soared into our societies through large blockbuster movies, television shows, games, and comic books (Jha, 2010). Our media alone has spent 12 billion dollars on influencing children regarding superhero styles, qualities, and perceptions (Jha, 2010). The media uses kid's meals at restaurants as well as clothing to emphasize their idea of the "awesome role model" for today's children (Jha, 2010). Superheroes have always infiltrated controversy as a role model for society, however because of the change in pop culture and push into digital technology, Mass media has created Superheroes to be further intensely transformed, exploited, and even seek aspects of injustice, which is contradicting term in the superhero realm (Jha, 2010). Today many superheroes actually use justice and caring as a kind of excuse for violence, explosions, and revenge. The Dark Knight movie from 2008 raised over $533,000,000, making it one of the most watched movies of all time. In the movie, Batman is filled with luxury. In one scene he asks his servant for a modest car, only to choose a very expensive, Lamborghini. The other latest movie, Iron Man also emphasizes fame and wealth as the only ways of being successful in life (Jha, 2010). Both examples reveal idealized fortunes and the greedy ideals of consumption that further promote the expansion of overconsumption in the United States. Superheroes also maintain a level of an impossibly perfect physique on both female and male forms. Female bodies carry the look a Barbie doll and are constantly seen with unrealistic and tight clothing, and very few carry a leading role within the storyline. (Jha, 2010) While the growth of diversity with the superheroes has expanded the dominant standard image is still Caucasian, young to early middle age, and middle or upper class (Superhero, 2010). The X-men series has developed roles of both male and female characters, however the movies focus more on explosions and revenge that develop into adult rated material that is questionable for kids. The downside with movies is its difficulty to help develop characters more and make the more personable (Jha, 2010). Furthermore, if a child doesn't live up to the expectations of being number 1 just like their favorite superhero, the media has also pronounced its influence on and promotion of becoming a slacker, sidekick, or class clown (Jha, 2010). Movies like the Green Hornet, and Hancock all have some act of emphasizing the "slacker/Careless" role for comedy (Jha, 2010). The best thing to do regarding superheroes is to become media savvy and be able to find lies within marketer's tools on influence. Superheroes can have a positive impact for our society. Superheroes aren't just super strength, and good looks. They should embody the act of justice and/or positivity and good will. Everyone can be a superhero in his or her own right in the everyday world.
Students will learn about media literacy through comic book heroes. There will be a discussion about what is a hero, how the media describes a hero, and how the media's description of a hero impacts us, the viewers. After the discussion, students will then create a 1-2 page comic strip of themselves as a hero in a daily life situation, first by drawing on paper. Once their comic strip is complete, the class will then scan their comic strips onto the computer. Adobe Photoshop will be used to learn how to draw digitally, add color, dialogue bubbles and text, and then finally to print the completed comic strip.

Here's a link to the full lesson plan!
2self hero lesson plan2.docx

Media Literacy

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Library resource #2

Addressing Media literacy in the classroom through Subvertising.

I was searching fir an article to write about and I found this great journal in the library databases
The article is about an art project that is design to teach middle school students about media literacy. The project taught the students about multi-million dollar advertisement campaigns and about subvertisments. The project started by the kids identifying logos and slogans they are exposed to everyday but also some from the 1900's. They were very good at identifying the companies or products. After they learned about the advertising companies they moved on to another project. For this project they made subvertisments in Photoshop. They picked a logo and revised it to address social issues. They targeted issues like obesity, global warming, homelessness and child abuse. For example, one student used the Coca Cola bottle and typeface to make a subvertisement that showed the link between soda drinks sold in schools and childhood obesity.
I thought this would be a very interesting project to do in class because it addresses media literacy while still using digital technology and allowing room for creative freedom. It kind of reminded me of the project we are doing in class now.
It would de interesting to do this project in a classroom so the students could see just how much the media affects them. Also, they would be able to create their own logo about an issue they feel very strongly about. I think it would be a great project to do in a middle school class.

Here's a link to the article!
Chung, S. K., et. al., Media Literacy Art Education: Logos, Culture Jamming, and Activities. Art Education v. 62 no. 1 (January 2009) p. 34-9


Chung, Sheng Kuan, and Micheal S. Kirby. "Media Literacy Art Education: Logos, Culture Jamming, and Activities." Art Education January 2009 62.1 (2009): 34-39. Print.

Creativity in Digital Art Education.

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Bi-Weekly LIbrary resource

For my Bi-Weekly report this week I looked at the databases on the school's library website and found a great article called, Creativity in Digital Art Education Teaching Practices.
I chose to write about this article because it has a lot to do with some things we've talked about in class regarding the importance of technology in the art classroom. The article talked about how it is important for teachers to adapt their lesson plans so they include digital methods even if it poses problems for the teacher. This might be hard for the teacher because students might need more help because they don't understand how the soft wares work or the teacher might need to learn how to use certain soft wares themselves before teaching with them. The article explains that the extra work will pay off for the students. If teachers ignore the changes that come with the digital age, it is to the detriment of the students. Students and artists in today's world are expected to know how to use these technologies. If they are not taught how to use them, there will be a rift between the young artists and the art world. It is important for teachers to use current digital methods because will help the students prepare for the art methods they will be using in the real world. According to the article, it also helps develop their problem solving skills, visual reasoning skills, and creative thought expression.
I personally agreed with a lot of what this article was saying. I think it is important for students to know how to use certain soft wares and equipment because they are probably going to have to use it in their future careers. Even though the soft wares will change, at least they will have some confidence using it since they have used it before.
It is easy to introduce digital methods in art because there are so many ways you could do it. Digital photography, film classes, typography,.. the list goes on and on. However, there are also ways to include soft wares in classes that are not normally very artistic like English classes for example. I know that writing is an art on it's own but there are ways to push the creativity in assignments. For example, the teacher could create an assignment where the students write their own poem and then make an illustration for the poem out of the words in Photoshop. They could just rearrange the words they used in their poem to create a landscape or the characters from the poem. I know this could be challenging or frustrating for some of the students, but it is a great way to incorporate a technique that would otherwise probably never be used in an English classroom.
This article taught me a lot about the importance of incorporating digital methods or soft wares in every child's education. Even if it isn't their normal cup of tea, they will benefit from the experience in the long run.

Here's a link to the Article;hwwilsonid=IPLGWD0UGIQ2LQA3DKDSFF4ADUNGIIV0


Black, Joanna, and Kathy Brownint. "Creativity in Digital Art Education Teaching Practices." Art Education 64.5 (2011): 19-34. Art Full Text. Web. 7 Dec. 2011. .


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Marker board Animation Lesson Plan!

Click for my Lesson Plan!
lesson plan.docx

Lesson Plan Overview

Grade Level: 5th Grade
Time Needed: 3 Class Periods.
Focus: Students will make a whiteboard animation about classroom objects coming to life.
Objectives: Students will...
A.) Describe how photo-, video-, and sound editing are used to create original products for expressive intent. (
B.) Describe a variety of tools, materials, and techniques used with software and hardware for creation in media arts. (
C.) Describe the use of elements in media arts such as image, sound, space, time, motion, and sequence. (
Motivational Resources
Youtube video. (a waste is a terrible thing to mind) g3GG-ng8&feature=related
Youtube video. The Marker Maker.
Book: Beginner's Guide to Animation- Mary Murphy
Art Materials
Camera, Tripod, White Board, Markers.

Introduction to the Lesson
Animations are created when we take many photos of a subject and rapidly play them back. The slight differences in the photos make the illusion that the pictures are moving. Animations are often presented as vide games or motion pictures. There are many types of animation including; claymation, pixilation, sand animation, cut-out animation, and whiteboard animation. They type we will be focusing on is whiteboard animation.
Marker board animations are made when you draw your images on a whiteboard, take a picture, change them slightly, and take another picture, until you have finished the movement or story. The smaller the movements, the clearer the video will turn out. It is important to have t tripod when you do this technique because of the camera moves too much, your images may be blurry or your animation might not be as clear as you would like. When you are done taking your photos, you simply upload them into Photoshop and turn them into an animation! The next step is to add sound in Garageband and cool effects in Imovie.

Bi weekly Report #5 Painting with Photoshop

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Still life painting in Photoshop

This week I am writing about a way Photoshop could be used in the classroom. When I was searching around on the Internet I found some tutorials that showed how to "paint" portraits in Photoshop. I thought it was it was really interesting to watch people's technique and amazing that they could make such realistic paintings using Photoshop.
I started thinking that it could be fun to have the students make a Photoshop portrait of themselves after watching a YouTube video and see how well they could replicate what the artist was doing. But then I realized that this might be way too time consuming and frustrating. Even for students that are seniors in high school. I kept searching around on YouTube for Photoshop tutorials and eventually found an example that taught how to paint a still life. This seemed like a way more practical assignment. The students could bring some small objects from home and set them up in an interesting arrangement next to their computer. Then they could "paint" what they see. I think this would be a fun assignment because the students could paint their objects in whatever style they find most interesting. They wouldn't have to make it realistic. They could play around with the different brushes and textures and see what they can make of it.
One of the only problems I could see with this project is that some of the kids might not be as skilled with Photoshop as they would like to be and therefore get frustrated with the whole process. One way that could be avoided would be to do the assignment with older students like seniors in high school. I feel like they would be far less nervous about how it is turning out and way more excited about seeing what they could accomplish with the software. Another problem might be not having enough computers with Photoshop in the classroom. The assignment would only be able to be done in a classroom if there were enough computers for each student.
I think this would be a great way to get students to experiment and explore Photoshop.

Here's an example of still life painting on Photoshop

Daevasmodeus. "Still Life Sketch in Photoshop - Derek LeBrun - YouTube." YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. 23 June 2009. Web. 16 Nov. 2011. .

Bi weekly Report #4 Photoshop for Kids

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Photoshop for kids Video

This week for my Bi weekly report, I decided to take a look at the Photoshop for Kids videos. The video I focused on was "Video Art in Photoshop: Adding Photoshop Filters to Video". The video teaches how to edit video clips using extended versions of Photoshop.
First of all, I thought it was an interesting video because I didn't even know that it was possible to edit video clips in Photoshop. Another thing I liked about the process is that it is very simple. It isn't a technique that would take a long time if you had to do it in a classroom with a lot of students but it still seems like something that would be fun for the kids.
After watching the video I started thinking that this editing technique would be good to use in a classroom because it could make a short and simple video much more exciting for both the kids and the viewer. One of the great things about editing the videos this way is that there are so many editing options and you can preview them before you try them out. It gives the kids more options and allows some room for creative freedom. It would be interesting to see which filters they would use and how they would use them. I think through using Photoshop, you could take rather simple videos of the students making funny faces or doing fun dances (like the ones we do in class!) and make them really cool.
I know that it wouldn't be possible to do this assignment in all schools because they might not have enough computers or even computers with Photoshop, but for the ones that do, it could be a lot of fun. It seems like a project that wouldn't be too demanding on the teacher, would keep the kids occupied with out taking up a lot of class time, and would teach the kids new skills in Photoshop.

Link to Photoshop for Kids Videos

Adding Photoshop Filters to Video

Video Art in Photoshop: Adding Photoshop Filters to Video from NicoleDalesio on Vimeo.


Dalesio, Nicole. "Video Art in Photoshop: Adding Photoshop Filters to Video on Vimeo." Vimeo, Video Sharing For You. 14 Apr. 2010. Web. 03 Nov. 2011. .

Bi Weekly Report #3 Wacom Inkling

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The Wacom Inkling

This week I decided to write about a product that can be used in art education. One product that I was really interested in is the new Wacom Inkling. This product is really cool because sometimes (most of the time really) it is a lot harder to draw something on a computer than it is to sketch in real life. This product is great for that. With the Inkling, you just place the receiver at the top of you page and then draw with the digital pen. The product seems very easy to use and would save a lot of time when you are trying to draw one of your sketchbook ideas out on the computer.
I think this would be a good product to use in the classroom because it would be a great way to get kids to start thinking about using layers and manipulating drawings in photoshop. One of the features I thought was really interesting about the product is that you don't need to use photoshop to assign parts of your drawing to different layers. You can do it while you are drawing in your sketchbook by simply pressing a button on the receiver. This is great because it would really get kids thinking about how layers work in photoshop.
One thing I was wondering about the inkling is if it would be possible to create animations since the receiver can create new layers. For example you could maybe take a long strip of paper and animate a man running. You would draw the man, then press the new layer button and draw him in a different pose, then create another layer and just keep going from that. I don't know if that would work with this product but I think it would be fun to find out. This would be a great project to do in a classroom or in an animation workshop like we are doing in class.
One of the problems with using this product would be that it is expensive and the school might not be able to afford it. Maybe some school funding would be able to cover the cost but there are cheaper ways of doing animation that would probably be considered a better idea in a classroom.

Follow this link to see the Inkling

Here's an informational video!!


"Inkling | Wacom Americas." Interactive Pen Displays and Tablets | Wacom Americas. 2011. Web. 24 Oct. 2011. .

Pixilation How to

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How to Make a Pixilation Animation:

Pixilation animation is stop-motion animation with live actors as subjects. Objects
may be incorporated as well.

Equipment needed:
-Digital camera
-Tripod (optional)
-Computer with Photoshop software
-A location to film or a capture station (such as a large sheet of colored paper to use
as a background)

Making the animation:
The first step in making a pixilation animation, once you've got all your equipment,
is to plan a storyline. Figure out what you want your actors to accomplish and what
kind of props they should use, if any. After a rehearsal or two, it will be time to
bring out the camera!

It's important that your camera's setting is manual rather than automatic. This is
because automatic settings adjust to the light after each snap of a picture, and that
may lead to a slightly distracting flickering effect in your animation. On manual, the
lighting will remain the same throughout the entire shoot. Also, it's important that
you shoot in a small file size, such as jpeg.

Shooting your pixilation animation is fairly simple, and the length of time it takes to
film depends on the complexity of your idea. One picture is taken per movement of
the actors and/or objects in your animation.

Simply move, take a picture, move, take a picture, move, take a picture, and so

By doing this, you can:
-Make people scoot across a surface without moving their legs!
-Make inanimate objects move!
-Make people magically appear and disappear!
-And more!

When you feel as if your shoot is complete, load the plethora of pictures you just
took onto Photoshop and put the finishing touches on your animation!

Here's an example

Our masterpiece

Quirky Anxiety in Disguise from Amanda Dahl on Vimeo.

Gunn, Karin. "Pixilation. Animation in the Artroom." Pixilation. Animation in the Classroom. Nov. 2006. Web. 12 Oct. 2011. .
Her Morning Elegance / Oren Lavie - YouTube. YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. 19 Jan. 2009. Web. 12 Oct. 2011. .
Film / Online Video
Murphy, Mary. Beginner's Guide to Animation. New York: Watson-Guptill Publications, 2008. Print.

Bi Weekly report #2

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Impact of Digital Imaging

Through my searching this week, I found and article about the Impact of digital imaging on fine arts.
I thought this was a very interesting article because it mentioned how technology has changed the way we make art. It was explaining how softwares that make it possible to paint on a computer have changed the traditional disciplines of painting, photography, etc. The article explained that you can even create textures and depth in the virtual brush strokes. What I found most interesting about was that the author of the article thought that virtual painting was a bad thing. It's true that painting on a computer may save time and may take away some of the unique characteristics that come with a "real life" painting, but it is still art. Painting on a computer takes just as much skill as painting in real life. It is just a different kind of skill.
One thing this article really got me thinking about is how we could make a class project that shows the differences between the two types of painting. I think it would be interesting to have the kids make a painting on the computer and then try to translate the painting into real life. Have them decide which one was more difficult. This way they are getting the skills in both brush-to-canvas painting and virtual painting.
Another thing I thought was interesting is how the author explained the differences between drawing by hand and drawing on a computer. In my opinion one of the hardest parts about drawing is trying to figure out proportions and where things should go in a piece. If we first drew our projects on a computer we could decide where everything needs to go without worrying about erasing. It is much easier to draw something and make it bigger or move it in a certain direction when it is not permanently fixed to a canvas.
I think we could use these computer tools in a way that would not take away the uniqueness of a hand made piece. If people are afraid of technology taking over the art of painting, maybe they could use them more like virtual sketchbooks. They could sketch out their ideas virtually before executing them on canvas. I think this would be a great idea in a classroom because it would help kids map out their ideas before they get started. They would also be developing their painting and computer skills.

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