I wanted to share my favorite camera from my vintage camera collection. I can't say why this one is my favorites, other than the fact that I love it's compact size. I used this photo during an online class through William and Mary and Colonial Williamsburg for teaching with museum exhibits.
As a child, I could always tell where my mom was in a crowd as all I had to do was look for the first flash of a camera. Mind you, I grew up in the 70s and my mom used the sad Kodak 110 camera. It produced a large collection of grainy memories. I'm not complaining, the pictures exist, which is more than many people can say. I am thankful that my mom had to mindset to capture my childhood on film.
My grandpa, Andy (see above), was also a photographer and a traveler. I like to think that I am much like him. I am currently looking for a Bantam camera like he used to add to my collection.
When teaching with objects, there are several approaches to take for instruction. Most commonly, I find myself simply having my students describing the artifact, hypothesizing what it may have been used for and who used it, and then how has it changed.
This summer, during the application sessions held during the Colonial Williamsburg Teacher Institute, we were introduced to two alternative strategies for object based learning. One approach is to take a type of object that has evolved through time and note how it has changed. Cameras are a great option to do this with. Toys, telephones/cell phones or countless other objects could be looked at from this view point. Our local history museum uses this approach in the local photography exhibit at a hands-on teaching cart. Children (and adults) are encouraged to look at a set of 5 cameras and put them in chronological order. The docent then asks how the participant came to that conclusion.
Another strategy is to look at the story of the object coming from the perspective of that object. I particularly think this would be fun with a camera. I think about my own cameras and the thousands of photos I have taken. What would it say about my perspective? The lighting? The subject? The settings? Would it have a favorite series of pictures and why?
For cameras that have captured tumultuous times, what would it have to say? Or the camera of a fashion designer or on a movie set? This type of approach challenges our students to look at an object through a different lens (no pun intended).
Challenge yourself to try some new strategies rather than falling into the same routine. Object based learning is powerful and has so many teaching opportunities to take advantage of.