My idea was totally inspired by the self portrait below when I was at Penn State for a Summer Institute on Contemporary Art.
We talked about the clues hidden in a self portrait or a portrait that might give us insight into that person. I had them write a list of their favorite things. Students practiced doing facial features and hands in their sketchbooks. The instructions sheets below can be found in Triarco.
They practiced drawing out their stories in their sketchbooks.
While there were successful self portraits throughout all 3 grade levels, the percentage wasn't high enough for me to consider this lesson a success. In reflecting back maybe I should have limited it to one image that would tell us something about them. Or had samples of different ways to approach this. If I do this again I will have photos of student work to share. Perhaps both the ones that worked and the ones that didn't. I am also seriously considering having students do an artist statement to reflect on the assignment and what they learned from it.
I would be very interested in hearing about the lessons that you didn't think worked.
Thanks for reading!!