Last semester and this semester we have used photographs and photography to learn about Social Studies. Last semester a group used photographs to map out an area like the campus or the layout of the Greenlawn. Another group used photographs to realize scale and size by taking pictures and redrawing our pictures related to the actual difference in sizes. Each group got a different topic in Social Studies to use with photography. Photography can be easily used in Social Studies in a number of ways, and can easily connect to what students know because they can be the ones taking photographs. They can gather information on a field trip or outdoor exploration by taking pictures that can be taken back to class. Students can document changes over time like with their appearance, the seasons, and so on. Photographs can be used to spark discussion on a given topic, and they can give a glimpse into students’ lives and families. You can use photographs to encourage prediction, observation, and hypothesizing. Young children who cannot yet read are able to view and understand a photograph, so there are no age restrictions with using photographs or photography.
Here are a few links to spark further ideas with the use of photography: