Teaching Poster

TEACHING POSTER FORMAT. Your project must satisfy ALL of the following criteria:

  • Project is drawn or mounted on posterboard. Unless you are specifically given permission to use full-size posterboard, your poster MUST be one-half a regular-sized 2 feet x 3 feet poster -- that is, 12 inches x 18 inches. It may be oriented portrait or landscape.
  • The only acceptable mounting materials are rubber cement or a glue stick. No tape. No staples.
  • Rule lines (base, mid, and top) have been drawn lightly in pencil with a ruler.
  • Rule lines have been neatly and carefully erased after drawing materials have dried thoroughly. No smears.
  • Any material that has been cut out is trimmed neatly and precisely. Straight edges are straight. Irrelevant background is trimmed out.
  • Projects are decorated colorfully with paint, colored pencils, felt-tip pens, crayon, pastels, or another medium specifically approved by the teacher.
  • Projects are illustrated with original artwork, traced or copied artwork, graphic designs, or appropriate photographs cut from magazines.
  • Your name must appear on the front of the project, discreetly, but legibly, in small print.
  • No words are misspelled.
  • No punctuation errors are made.
  • No capitalization errors are made.
  • No usage errors are made. Watch out for pronoun and verb errors.

A wise student would sketch all lettering or drawings lightly in pencil and proofread several times. A very wise student would enlist the aid of several proofreaders.

TEACHING POSTER TOPICS. The purpose of these posters is to visually illustrate major concepts from the work studied. In order to receive a good grade, your poster project must TEACH something about the work. Looking at your poster should enlighten the viewer.

  1. Plot: Diagram the main plot and any subplots. Find a visual way to demonstrate and illustrate the various conflicts, turning points, connections between plot and subplot, and so on. You might also consider examining parallel or recurring events.
  2. Timeline: Prepare an illustrated timeline of events in the work. Although the actual events may not be revealed chronologically (by recollection and flashback perhaps), remember to proportion the length of the line to the total number of years the work covers. Include illustrations or quotes at major points on the line.
  3. Major Character: Prepare a poster portrait of one of the major characters. Include an illustration of the character as described by the author and include significant quotes from the work which demonstrate the various methods of characterization -- name, physical description, what the character says, what the character does, how other characters react to your character, etc.
  4. Character Comparison: Prepare a poster comparing and contrasting two of the major characters who can be analyzed as doubles and/or opposites. Include an illustration of each character as the author describes them and include significant quotes from the work which demonstrate the various methods of characterization -- names, physical descriptions, what the characters say, what the characters do, how other characters react to your characters, etc.
  5. Character Relationships Make a cluster diagram showing the relationships of the characters to each other. Include a sketch of each character or perhaps a specific object associated with each one. Also include a characteristic saying or a significant quote about each. Start with the main character(s) at the center.
  6. Character Symbols: Frequently, characters in a work are associated with particular objects which take on a symbolic value. Prepare a chart showing characters and appropriate objects, explaining how the object represents the character. If no object is actually associated with the character in the work, you may choose an object which you think would be appropriately symbolic for your characters and explain your choices.
  7. Symbolic Recipes: Write and illustrate symbolic recipes for major characters, events, and/or themes in the work. Remember to follow recipe format for ingredients and method of preparation, but think symbolically. A cup of evil, not a pound of flesh.
  8. Settings: Illustrate the major settings, including descriptive quotes from the work and indicating major events that occurred at each setting. If appropriate, consider using a map format.
  9. Image Strands: Prepare a chart showing specific examples of the major image strands in the work, including quotes as appropriate. Write a brief statement analyzing the effect of each image strand. (Hint: colors, animals, nature, darkness and light, etc.)
  10. Figurative Language: Find several examples of various figures of speech: hyperbole, metaphor, simile, personification, etc. Prepare a chart listing and illustrating your examples.
  11. Significant Lines: Select what you consider to be the most important quote, quotes, or longer passage in the work. Prepare a collage which truly illustrates the meaning of the lines from the work. Include the lines themselves.
  12. Concrete Poems: Write a set of several concrete poems appropriate to the work, perhaps illustrating characters, events, themes, or even the work as a whole. The poems themselves will, of course, be your illustrations.

Particular works may suggest other possible topics to you. If you have an idea for a poster which is not included above, discuss it with your teacher.

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