Photography and Cutlines Lesson – Day Two

Prepared by: Jami Williams, Mexico High School, Mexico, Missouri

Students will practice taking good photojournalistic photos with a provided guiding directive.


  1. PowerPoint presentation
  2. Applied learning technique
  3. Individual Learning Activity


  1. Level 1 (Basic) understanding of basic photographic techniques
  2. Level 2 (Proficient) application of the basic photo techniques


  1. Photography PowerPoint Day 2
  2. SmartPhones (personal) or cameras
  3. Snap To It portrait assignment
  4. Me In A Nutshell sheet
  5. Picture It This Way sheet


Steps to check for student understanding

  1. Teacher will do frequent comprehension checks in the form of Classroom Assessment Techniques (thumbs up, thumbs down; exit slip in the form of post-it note summary).
  2. Students will be bringing in photos the day after this assignment that can be assessed for learning level and understanding.


  1. Suggested bell ringer: Has the “digital” movement made anyone with a camera believe they can be a professional photographer? How do you feel about this?
  2. Teacher will present the PowerPoint.
  3. Teacher will pair students up with each other and distribute the Me In A Nutshell sheet.
  4. Teacher will serve as guide and facilitator as students interview each other.
  5. Once the interviews are completed, students will then use the information that they learned about each other to create a portrait that captures the “essence” of the other student. Be prepared to give students passes to leave the classroom. Also, give them a set amount of time to complete the assignment so that they have time to return to the classroom. Remind them to use the rule of thirds, lighting, placement and the other elements of good photography.
  6. Students will reconvene and either text or email their photos to the teacher.
  7. The teacher will display the photos and share them with the class. Each photographer will explain why they chose to photograph the student in the way that they did based on the interview.
  8. Teacher will distribute and explain the Individual Learning activity that will be used in the next day’s lesson for cutline and caption writing.


  1. Exit slip: What was most difficult about capturing the portrait today?