Make Your Own Postcards
Age Range: 7 to 11
(This activity is linked to the activities here)
Before this activity is tried, you will need a collection of postcards which can show children how postcards are normally set out. Once they are familiar with the layouts, they can make some of their own (which they could even be sent to friends and family).
The postcards that the children make can, of course, depict any scene. However, the children might find the activity more enjoyable if the picture is relevant to them. You can find your pictures in a number of places:
- On the Internet - Find suitable pictures and save them to your hard-drive by right-clicking on the picture and selecting "Save Picture as...".
- Let the children take photographs of their local area / school. When these are developed, they can be scanned (if you have a scanner) or most photo developers will now offer the service of putting your pictures onto a floppy disk or a CD-ROM, so that you can access them using your computer.
- If you have a digital camera, this is an ideal source for photos. Children can take lots of pictures (which can be erased if they are not used) of their local area and school. You might also want them to take photographs when you go on visits, so that these can be used when you return to the classroom.
When you have your pictures, the children (individually or in small groups) can choose the photo which they like best, and open it in a paint program. Once this is done, they can paste a message on top of the photo such as "Wish you were here..." or the name of the place depicted in the photo.
If they have a number of photos which they like, they could shrink them and paste them all onto one postcard, so that it shows a number of different scenes from the same area.
When the children are happy with their postcards, they can be printed and a message / address written on the back.
Electronic Postcards are now very popular, so why not encourage the children to make their own ones? They will obviously need to be familiar with this type of postcard, and they can gain experience by sending a few to their friends! Sites like www.bluemountain.com let you send them, although you might have to pay.
To make an electronic postcard, the children will need to be shown how to use multimedia software, such as Powerpoint.
To make their postcard, the children will need to insert an appropriate picture, add some text above or below the picture, and they might also want to include a background song. There are many .midi files available for download from the internet, which are suitable for this.
When this is done, they should save their postcards so that their classmates can view them at another time. They could even (if you have some webspace) post them on the internet, so that friends around the world can see them!
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