Davis second graders went out today on their photo shoot. After walking around the block last week on a scouting trip, the students chose four destinations: The Commons at Eudora Welty’s Birthplace, the law firm, the restaurants, and the mission house. In the photo at the left, this student is taking a photograph inside a restaurant. The building was built in the early 1900s and featured some interesting woodwork, brick flooring and walls, and some copies of archival photographs.
The co-owner of the restaurant is talking here about how she visited the Mississippi Department of Archives and History and found photographs of the neighborhood in its earlier days. In one photograph on the wall on the right, the street that Davis is now located on (Congress Street) is a dirt road.
By this point in the day, we were using four cameras. (We started the day with only one charged camera. One was showing a low battery; the other two had not been charged at all. We had a breakdown in communication so no one took care of charging the cameras. This will go under our lessons learned column.) As you can see, even the student without the camera is modeling picture taking.
Once we explained a few simple things about the cameras — how to turn them on, zoom in and out, and view photos — we found that the students were remarkably self-sufficient. Several had used digital cameras at home. They were very quick studies. In order to keep track of which photos were taken by which students, we asked them to take a self-portrait at arms length at the start of their shooting session.
Here some students are on the balcony at the Tattered Pages Bookstore in The Commons at Eudora Welty’s Birthplace. The fountain on the plaza had to be the favorite subject of the day — especially when a friendly employee offered to show the students how the fountain looked when the water was set at a higher pressure. Wow!
For those you who were curious about Eudora Welty’s birthplace, here’s a photograph.