Oxford Dictonaries Word of the Year for 2013 was selfie. We see them being taken everywhere we go. You ask any “tween” and they can tell you the best way to take a selfie. It has completely infiltrated our culture.
So, do selfies have a place in education? I would argue, absolutely. As educators we are always looking for relevant, purposeful and meaningful ways to engage and motivate our learners. While some may outwardly protest, everyone likes to be asked to be in a selfie.
Here are a few ways I have come to see how selfies are beneficial to learning:
1. Selfies serve as marker point. An image of “this is where it all began,” a place that can later be looked at a reflected upon. This is excellent for when new teams are forming and maybe even storming. Gives them a reference point to look back later and see how they have transformed.
Northwest ISD 2014 Convocation
2. Selfies can be done along the way as one or a group progress. In our district we have been using a line of progression regarding student learning goals for an entire class and with each individual student. If a line of learning progression was created along a wall and selfies were taken as they academically progressed along the wall, the selfies could then be compiled at the end of that learning process or goal. Those selfies could then be inserted into a Flipagram and create a quick flipbook documenting the growth that could then be embedded into the student’s ePortfolios.
3. Take selfies as students progress through a Problem Based Learning (PBL) event. The selfies taken at various stepping stones of learning become images that serve to document the process. It may even become part of the final presentation.
Candid shot of PLC, teachers working on the work
4. Selfies can actually serve as camouflage to capture an authentic event without the topic of the picture knowing. Many times this serves as a way to capture a very real situation without the subjects being aware.
Celebrating the launch of Genius Hour on one of my Campuses
5. Want to capture a celebratory moment? Capture an image with someone who influenced your learning? Capture a culturally significant event on your campus? All these are “selfie worthy” and build an identity of community and sense of belonging.
#Selfies serve to mark a turning point, a significant moment, a stake in a progression forward. #Selfies tell us that we matter, our students matter and the learning progression… it matters.
How are you being your #selfie?