Abstraction Part 2: The Student Perspective

selfies_LOTFThis past Friday I posted briefly about an assignment I gave my gifted students to work on their ability to connect more abstract ideas to text that they’re reading (In this case, Lord of the Flies). You can read about it here. I stuck with pop culture topics that the students would be familiar with for the purposes of keeping interest as well as in an effort to get the mini-project done in the hour-long class period. Well, the results are in and I have to say I’m proud of some of the connections they make. Many make simple one-to-one connections with characters, but a few dug a little deeper. This should hopefully lead to introducing more difficult abstract topics in the future. Read on to see some of the results with explanations of the work!

selfies_LOTFThis gem was produced with ‘selfies’ in mind for a topic. While this image doesn’t include a clear explanation, I’d be willing to say the picture and caption say more than enough. It’s creative and shows a clear tie to power structures in Lord of the Flies and our modern affinity to show the world images of ourselves. What do you think?

Snapchat_LOTFSnapChat is an interesting phenomenon in of itself. Here students have connected the idea of consequence and perceptions with the boys on the island; they do a great job of connecting their idea directly to the text as well.

HP_LOTFWhile a simple and ‘dry’ with no images tied to slide, this particular connection to Harry Potter develops bridges to various symbols in both texts. While not mentioned here, in class the idea of some of these symbols really being archetypes even though they are not exactly the same, made for interesting discussion. These seem quite astute to me!

Starwars_LOTF1Here’s a two parter. This first slide is clearly a brief connection to Star Wars. What I found so apt about this slide, however, is the last three words. What a powerful idea that the text and movie are tied to a battle for the soul! While not deeply tied to a passage like others, this certainly makes me stop to think of my own comparisons. Part two here…

Starwars_LOTF2…simply makes me smile. It’s always fun to see students have fun with genre and cross written forms with abstraction and humor!

Adventure_LOTFThis is one of my favorites. It takes a rather dark theory about the show Adventure Time (very popular with older children and younger teens) and ties it to the darkness found in Lord of the Flies. I remember distinctly the girls in this group asking if they could have ‘permission’ to tie their topic with the theory presented above. I found this interesting that they felt they needed an authoritative voice to allow them to make the connection. Why didn’t they feel authorized already? Was it something I’ve said before? Or were they worried they’re connection had no real value? If you read what they wrote above, I think their is no doubt how powerful their connections are!

And the most interesting for last…

Miley_LOTFOh Miley, what would I do without you?! This group was incredibly excited about taking Miley as topic to tie to Lord of the Flies. They worked hard on it. (They originally produced three slides all with animations with multimodality subconsciously in mind.) They wanted to talk about it with the class and ‘show it off.’ Rightfully so–they do a great job tying their ideas not only to images, but to the text as well. The passage they chose is quite apt don’t you think? While not every group took full ownership of this mini-project, it was inspiring to watch this particular group own, love, and share their collaboration.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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