Create Comic Strip Fables Book
(Get Your Students to Pick the Life Lessons for their Classmates)
A well-known book publisher wishes to create a comic strip book of fables that will provide people with ‘life lessons’. They wish to get a ‘kid’s perspective’ on what should go in this book and that is where you come in.
Part One – You must research ‘fables’ and find the best one you think could be a good life lesson for someone in our class.
Part Two – Create a 10-panel comic strip of the story. The comic strip must: use only capital letters for the writing, show evidence you have tried to ‘move outside’ the way you normally draw, use a variety of framing in the panels eg close up, really close up, torso shots, etc. Each frame is to be 6cm by 6cm.
Extension – ‘ink in’ the comic strip using a black felt tip pen. Scan it and color it in your favorite graphics editor.
Possible Discussion Topics –
- These stories as indoctrination and a means of control. Discuss.
- These stories as completely out of touch with modern reality. Discuss.
- These stories as wisdom passed through the generations.
Teaching Tips and Tricks –
- Show some comic strips and examine their layout. Pay particular attention to the variety of compositions of each frame i.e close up, long shot, 3/4 shot, tight cropping, etc. You are actually teaching the conventions of this text.
- Encourage the children to emulate the style of a comic strip and not just have a series of panels all looking the same with a bit of writing in them. Examine the features of the text.
- Grab some cartooning books and experiment yourself with different head shapes, eyes, noses, body shapes, etc.
- Demonstrate this experimentation to your class and encourage the children to do the same.
- Discuss the use of vocabulary for the audience. Use enough ‘new words’ to get some learning happening but not too many that the meaning is lost. Make it ‘child friendly’ but don’t ‘dumb it down’.