Using digital photography in the classroom is important for documenting what you are doing for you, your students, and their parents. But how do you do all that? How do you actually take the pictures, organize photos, and distribute them to parents?
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That’s what I’ll share with you in this post. If you’re not set on why you should be utilizing digital photography in the classroom, you can check it out here.
You know I am all about systems, streamlining things in an organized way, so you can bet I have some ideas on this very topic :).
How to Take Photos in the Classroom
First, let’s talk about how to actually facilitate the taking of the photos because you have 1.453 million things on your plate. Why would you add taking photos to it?
Simple. Because it’s worth it!
If you teach young students or it is at the beginning of the new year, I recommend you taking the pictures. You likely have your phone on you throughout the day. Once you learn how to see photos through a different lens (pun intended!) you can easily see moments throughout the day to snap a photo or two.
To be honest, even one or two photos a day adds up to a lot of photos in a year!
You could also make it a classroom job. When I interviewed Thom Gibson for the podcast, he shared that he does this in his middle school classroom and I thought it was a genius idea. If you have a classroom iPad, this is a breeze!
It can be a job that rotates every few weeks or a job they keep all semester. Either way, I suggest educating the “Class Photographer” on what kind of photos you want and how to take quality photos (if you want to learn how to take quality photos both at school and of your loved ones- you can learn here!).
It is an initial time commitment, but once you teach one kid, that kid teaches the next kid and so on.
How to Organize Photos
Okay, here is the part I geek out on- how to organize photos!
As with everything I teach about when it comes to organization, the photos need a home (on your computer) and it needs to be as niched down as possible.
Here is what I mean by that. You need a folder on your computer for pictures. Within that folder, you need another folder for each class. Within that folder, you need folders for each day you upload, preferably with a brief description of what is going on in that group of pictures.
Again, this could be something you add to your plate OR a job a student does. 🙂
My friends Autumn and Bethany have a podcast episode where they talk about how to organize photos. AND, Bethany is a classroom teacher who takes lots of photos in her classroom and actually goes into detail about this very topic. I highly recommend giving it a listen.
(And by friends I mean I stalk them online and comment like we are bffs. We did record a podcast together, but they are basically my online organizing bffs!)
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Sharing the Photos
First, we need to acknowledge that not all parents want their kid’s photos taken and shared with the class. That’s okay, be sure to get permission from parents at the beginning of the year.
When they came in for Meet the Teacher Night I had them tell me if it was okay for the kids to be in class photos. I also asked them if it was okay that these photos be shared with the class. They answered both these through a google form.
For the parents who say yes to both, there are plenty of ways you can share the photos with them.
- Weekly or Monthly newsletters
- A Private Facebook Group
- A Class website
- An App like Seesaw, Class Dojo, or Bloomz
How to Take Quality Photos
The Ultimate Bundles team has put together a new selection of online resources that teach you how to take better pictures. This collection on the new Photography Super bundle has 12 ecourses and 6 ebooks talking about how to do photography better.
As an affiliate, I got early access to the bundle and picked out a few courses and ebooks that piqued my interest. They have resources on these very topics- how to take better photos and how to organize them.
I put all the “need to know” info on the new Photography Bundle together right here (my favorite products in the bundle, how to get it, why it’s such a steep discount- all of it is right here!)
If you are feeling excited about taking pictures but unsure of the practical ways to do this, check out the bundle which is on sale for only a few days!
Until next time,
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