Sunday, 4 December 2016

Visual Text (Static Image) Assessment - Explaining the Criteria

Hey there, sorry for the long break between posts - the weeks flash by here and I've been busy, busy, busy!

Back to my Static Image/Visual Text lessons - Explaining the Criteria and giving out the assessment guidelines.

Here's a copy of my Visual Text Assessment - it's based on the NCEA guidelines but I added a lot for the students so they could really break down and see how to get the best marks. It includes the assessment criteria, explanation of draft and peer review and finally, the peer review checklist.

Let's break it down, shall we?

The Main Criteria 

Page one, the basic criteria and due dates, etc...I read over the table of expectations with the students and made sure they understand what is being asked of them. I also explain how the draft portion of this project is HUGE and important. 
The draft is worth 10, then the peer review of the draft is worth 10 , the teacher's approval of draft is worth 10 and you can earn up to 10 marks for showing understanding of the draft process which influences your final visual text.

I chose to make the draft mandatory and important to this assessment because my mother, who has taught visual text projects in English for many years, had warned me that many students do not follow a draft and then end up with an aimless, not well thought out final images.

I didn't want that. I wanted them to value the drafting process and stick to their drafts as that would mean that not only did their peers and teacher give feedback to improve where necessary but also so that they would stick to a plan and not end up rushing a whole new concept!

I also provided my own example of a draft. I chose to do it on the Save Our Shell's poster I made for a demonstration of the last lesson - when a client comes to visit and we had to design a poster for them on sea conservation - see lesson here. 

I purposely chose NOT to do it on our text "On the Sidewalk Bleeding" because I don't want them to copy me. 

The main thing I stressed with my students - is that it does not need to be a work of art, a draft simply has to have the outline of what they are going to draw in their final. And must have a lot of annotations explaining their choices.

The Peer Review Checklist

Although some may criticize my checklist as 'anal' or too much - for a first time teacher of this Visual Text assignment I wanted it as detailed and thoughtful as possible. I also wanted to provide a sort of mathematical way of marking the draft and simultaneously letting the students see for themselves, how I was marking them - and they would also mark each other using the same checklist.

Here it is:

As you can see, it's a pretty thorough and we went through it box by box so that the students could see what I was looking for - and more importantly, what they themselves, would be looking for when they marked each other. Now, a serious part of this is what constitutes a 'reason' - as you can see for colour, layout, dominant image, etc - I ask for "2 or more reasons" or "3 reasons for choice" etc. This was what I really wanted to discuss with them. I started with colour and wrote on the board:

"This is coloured pink because it's pretty."

Then I asked the class - is that a good reason for you to write in your draft?
The class answered - like music to my ears - in unison, "No!"

Okay, so what's a good reason?

A few students replied - "it has to relate to the story/text" which I applauded - and we brainstormed some reasons for 'pink'

We came up with some:

"This is coloured pink because it relates to the colour of Andy's heart, which has been stabbed in the story."

"Pink is connected to love and it links to the love of Andy and Laura in the story."

Of course, they hadn't created any image with the colour pink but it was through this activity that they could understand and think about what makes a 'good reason' for a visual text. I also told them that not every colour needs to have an amazing reason - it could also relate to the visual qualities of the design but I wanted to ensure that the students were always connecting their choices to the story 'On the Sidewalk Bleeding'.

After going through the peer review checklist I told them to start their drafts. 
Stay tuned as I will post about the drafting stage and finals soon! 

Happy Teaching!


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