Fall 2013 Quest #3 – Original Photography

Quest #3 involved taking original still photographs that contained representations of a questing group’s assigned vocabulary word.

Below you’ll find links to videos and ballots for each word. So you know what’s at stake, the winning group earns +100 toward their group XP (experience points). On behalf of the questing groups in Reading Room 211, I thank you for looking at our work and voting.


  • View photo representations of COMMERCE  and vote for your favorite
  • View photo representations of DEMOLITION and vote for your favorite
  • View photo representations of EXCAVATION and vote for your favorite
  • View photo representations of GLOBAL and vote for your favorite
  • Return to original post

I originally saw this idea at the National Advanced Placement conference this summer. Juniors and seniors in high school were taking photographs that represented tone words, in an effort to really understand them. I thought it would make a fantastic group quest.

I am very excited to see how my students thinking changes as we repeat this quest with different vocabulary words. I was incredibly excited to see how some groups really got into the quest, and I’m excited to see how some groups struggled through the quest. Because for some of them, this kind of visualizing wasn’t easy.

I’m especially excited about the students who are learning English (meaning it isn’t their first language. I still consider myself and English language learner, and it’s the only language I speak). Taking photographs was a way for them (and for all my students) to demonstrate their understanding without having to rely on words they may not yet be comfortable with.

A drawback I found was lack of equipment. Students were using my iPod touch to take the photographs, edit them, and upload them to Edmodo. It was a rush toward the end of class to make sure all five groups had a chance to take their photos and submit them. Early in the day, students took photos with their phones (and I would love to see them go out into the community and take photographs in the future, or rather remember to do so — some of the groups planned to and then forgot), but we found that the transfer of the photographs to a place where they could edit them was more difficult than intended.  Especially since they can’t connect to the wireless and Edmodo only allows photo uploading over a wireless connection.

I’m still thinking about what I could do to streamline the technology part of this lesson; I’m incredibly happy with the results otherwise.  Any suggestions you have on changes to this process are welcome.

My hope is that, by the end of the semester, students will be able to take photographs on their own, without the support of their groups. Then there will be a whole lot more photographs to choose from.


  1. I tought that is a good thing because we know more about the words and the bad thing was that we don’t recive alot of votes on our picture.


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