Stanley, Let's Take a Selfie
by Jeremy Latimer
As mobile devices begin to play an ever-increasing role in our students’ lives, I continuously look for ways to incorporate the use of this resource throughout classroom activities. The essential part of this spotlight on strategy has students connect their experiences outside of school to concepts that they are studying in class. Ultimately, “when developed with emphasis on their connections and applications, powerful ideas provide the basis for authentic activities that allow students to apply what they are learning to their lives outside of school” (Marzano, 2010). Clif Mims also states that “Authentic learning offers the opportunity for teachers to bring the outside world into the classroom. In doing so, students can begin creating those connections. This will empower them to transfer their knowledge and skill learned at school into their everyday lives outside of school, thus making the value of learning much more important to them” (Mims, 2003). In addition to connecting our students learning to authentic situations, our students’ level of engagement is motivated through assignments that give them opportunities to express themselves. By incorporating the use of selfies in connection with class content, along with “the more encouragement a learner has to become invested in material on a personal level, the easier it will be to assimilate the unfamiliar” (Lombardi, 2007).
With this understanding, how can a student use a selfie to show the presence of science in the real world? How can a student use a selfie to show math, science, social studies, and/or art in the real world? Pick one of these questions, find its presence in the world around you, take a picture with Stanley, and contact me with your image. Oh, and don't forget to smile!
Now that you had the opportunity to take your own selfie, what other concepts have your students learned that can be connected to real-world situations through the use of selfies?
Citations and Credits:
Websites and Books
Giordano, C. (2014, May). What Selfies Can Teach us About Education [Blog post]. Retrieved
Lombardi, M. M. (2007, May). Authentic learning for the 21st century: An overview. Retrieved from http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ELI3009.pdf
Marzano, R. (2010). On excellence in teaching. (p. 306). Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree Press.
Mims, C. (2003). Authentic learning: A practical introduction and guide for implementation.
Meridian, 6(1), Retrieved from www.ncsu.edu/meridian/win2003/authentic_learning/
Rozz. (2015, January 18). 10 ways to use selfies in the classroom [Blog post]. Retrieved from
[Image]. (2009, September 11). Retrieved from http://www.sciencecheerleader.com/2009/09/flat_stanley_and_science/
[iPhone capturing the sunset]. (2015, February 28). Retrieved from https://www.pexels.com/photo/iphone-picture-ios-taking-photo-7543/fs_tracingtemplate3
Flat Stanley braving the weather in Miami Beach [Photograph]. (2011, April 16). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Flat_Stanley_Project
[Man observing clouds]. (2015, March 19). Retrieved from https://www.pexels.com/photo/nature-sky-sunset-man-6550/