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Color in Motion- Exploring Color

What it is: Amazing really doesn’t do this site justice.  No really, this might be my favorite site of the month…that is saying something!  Regardless of if you teach about color or art, Color in Motion is a must see just for the creativity and brilliance of the site.  Color in motion is a wonderfully animated and interactive experience of color communication and color symbolism.  Have you ever looked at an art website and thought, “really, this is the best they could do? It is a site about art for crying out loud!”  No? Just me? Color in Motion is not one of those sites. The minute you begin exploring you know that this isn’t just a site about color, it is a work of art.  There are three activities on  Color in Motion.  The Stars introduces students to the color stars (primary and secondary colors personified).  When students click on a color stars profile they learn about their blood (the color(s) that make them up), what the star is hired to represent (the feelings the color gives), the positive and negative traits, and what the color represents around the world.  In the movies, students can sit back and enjoy the show as they learn about the symbolism of each color in a fun animation.  In the Lab, students have the opportunity to interact with the different stars. Students can direct a scene acting as a movie director based on a word that represents the color choice.  In project 2, students are a color star manager. It is up to them to decide which production their star is going to participate in based on what they learned about color symbolism.  Project 3 is a kaleidoscope where students can just have fun and “play” with color in a virtual kaleidoscope. How to integrate Color in Motion into the classroom: Color in Motion is a fantastic place for students to learn more about color in a highly interactive, engaging, and fun way.  Students learn about color through story.  They meet each of the colors as a different character being cast for a production.  The site is great for any art or design class but could be equally wonderful for a creative writing project.  After your students have had some time to explore the site and interact with the different characters, ask them to choose a character to write a story about.  Students should write the story based on the character traits they know about the color. As a getting-to-know-you activity, students could choose a color that they feel best represents them personally.  Students can list all of the color attributes that they feel describe them.  Are they a mix of colors? Have students write down what the mix is and why. Looking for a way to spice up spelling/vocabulary practice? Have students assign each word a color based on the word meaning and the color character traits that match.  Students can compare and contrast the colors they chose for the words with the colors other students chose for a light persuasive argument. As students study historical and literary figures, they can assign each a color based on the matching character traits.  It would make a really neat bulletin board to have a color wheel with pictures of historical/literary characters on each color based on the similar character traits.  These types of activities help students draw parallels and think about history and literature in new ways. Younger students can think about what color an animal would be if it was the color of its color character traits.  The creative possibilities with Color in Motion are endless. Oh yeah, in addition to all of those “spin-off” ideas, there are great creative activities right on the site many of which would be great for whole class with a projector-connected computer or interactive whiteboard, for small groups in a center activity, or individually in a one to one computer situation. Tips: Color in Motion can be viewed in both English and Spanish.  If you have students learning English or Spanish as a second language, the colors and adjectives on this site are wonderful! Please leave a comment and share how you are using Color in Motion in your classroom.

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A Periodic Table of Visualization Methods

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Art, Classroom Management, collaboration, Create, Evaluate, Interactive Whiteboard, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 16-06-2011

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What it is: The Periodic Table of Visualization Methods is a brilliant collection of visualization methods for displaying, understanding and using information.  The periodic table is broken down into data visualization, information visualization, concept visualization, strategy visualization, metaphor visualization, and compound visualization.  Each “element” of the table includes information about the element such as if it is a process visualization or a structure visualization.  Each “element” also includes cues about what kind of thinking the visualization requires (divergent or convergent).  As you move your mouse over the table, an example of the “element” pops up.  As I said, brilliant!  The Periodic Table of Visualization is an excellent way to help students (and teachers) understand and explore visual literacy.

How to integrate A Periodic Table of Visualization Methods into the classroom: A Periodic Table of Visualization is a great place to start helping your students understand how to decode visual information as well as how to create visual representations of information.  I’m a HUGE fan of infographics, graphic organizers, charts, graphs, mind maps, etc.- definitely a visual learner!  Students often come across visual information graphics in their reading for the classroom.  Unfortunately, we don’t always spend time helping students understand that visual information because we are SO focused on the text.  The Periodic Table of Visualization gives you a one-stop-shop to discuss the different kinds of visual data, helping students understand how to “read” and decode that information.  These are great critical thinking activities because they ask students to process information in a different way.  Use the Periodic Table with an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computer to expose students to examples of different types of visual information.  Talk about each one and how information is being conveyed.  If you have interactive whiteboard software, use the annotation feature to “stamp” or keep track of the different kinds of visual data students come across during the year in their reading.  Make it a year-long goal to find an example of each type of visualization.  This will keep your students looking for and engaging with visual literacy.

Take it a step further and encourage your students to create their own information graphics and visualizations.  After some learning that was completed, ask students to choose one of the “elements” from the table of visualization and create their own graphic or table.

I love the way that a Periodic Table collects and organizes information.  Currently I am working on the first unit of inquiry for students at Anastasis Academy.  From first through eighth grade, all of the units are focused around community.  I thought it might be fun to create our own periodic table of community.  Each student can add an “element” that makes up community.  Instead of just pictures popping up on our periodic table, I thought students could add video, photos, text, or audio.  Each student will add to the community periodic table and we will use this as part of our school code of conduct.  Here is what I am thinking: Each student will learn about community and choose a method of sharing what they learned (video, audio, text, photo).  They will create their “element” using their iPad and add it to their online portfolio at edu 2.0.  I can easily access all files from one place (edu 2.0) and add the projects to a periodic table of elements that I create on Wix.com.  I’ll link from the Table to the student projects and voila, a Periodic Table of Community.  I’ll let you know how it works in practice :)

Another related idea: create a Periodic Table of Students during the first weeks of schools.  Add each student’s picture to the periodic table along with their class room number and initials as their Element information.  This can be printed out and turned into a bulletin board for the classroom or shared on an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computer with parents at back to school night.  If you have “star” students in your classroom (or VIP) you might add the student picture to the periodic table when it is their week to share and shine.

Tips: Thank you to my friend @artysteph26 for sharing this awesome resource on Twitter yesterday.  Thanks Steph!  **Reminder: if you don’t have a personal learning network on Twitter, I highly recommend spending some time on that this summer.  That small time investment is worth it’s weight in gold I tell ya!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using  A Periodic Table of Visualization Methods in your classroom!

Comments (2)

I love the idea of creating a community periodic table, and wix.com is amazing. Hope you share the end result! Would love to see it in action.

I will do that when I can Kim!

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