Photo of It's Hiding Up My Sleeve - 7th Grade English by Amy Cobb

It's Hiding Up My Sleeve - 7th Grade English by Amy Cobb

By Amy Cobb


This is a powerful reflection of a young girl’s seventh grade experience. It tells a story using six photos that defined her middle school year. Something as simple as this really packs a punch. So far, it has been viewed 968 times.

Students take ownership of the project by taking their own images to illustrate their thoughts and ideas.

Students record their thoughts and ideas in a format that can be viewed again and shared with friends and parents.


I was looking for heartfelt, honest and passionate pieces. We talked about what happened in seventh grade in terms of friendships, sports, academics. The overall theme for the boys and girls, after looking at all the VoiceThreads, was sense of belonging, where do I fit in? Drama, drama, drama. The end result was everything and more I imagined it to be, and I know this sounds hokey, but it was an extremely powerful and moving project.

The students were given a project sheet that listed the required elements, and we discussed the concept of a reflection piece and how to look beyond the obvious when choosing photos that are meaningful. Only two of the photos could be of friends. They needed to explain fully why these places, things or people were important to their seventh grade experience. The students had a week to complete this project. They could type their responses, record, use the webcam and doodle feature.

Easy Parts

The whole project was easy, really, it is that simple.


Hardest part for the student: Typing up the project sheet, and getting all my thoughts down took the longest. There were no setbacks or surprises.


The students were asked to bring in digital cameras, or they could use their phones for the taking of the photos. I gave them one class period to wander around campus and take as many pictures as possible. They also carried around a permission form from me in case any other faculty member stopped them to ask what they were doing.


Go for it! It all begins with a discussion and in the end you have something very powerful. You also learn a lot about your students. Just when you think you know them, a surprise pops up.