Are you an educator? Did you know that students retain more and learn at a deeper level when they are engaged in creative thinking connecting to the subject? Consider combining multiple subjects into one project. Instead of having separate exams and projects for every subject, combine all the subjects in a magazine. Not only is it a nice change from the way things are usually done, but it also supports a holistic approach to learning. It gives students hands-on experience and the opportunity to use their knowledge and tools in real world scenarios.
Work together to reduce the workload for teachers and students
Enlist the help of fellow teachers and to create a project together that combines different subjects into one project. The magazine project can be graded for all the chosen subjects. It helps remove a great deal of the workload not only for students, but also for teachers.
Dear teachers, instead of preparing various exams and projects by yourself, you can work together with your colleagues to create one magazine project that can be handed in and graded for multiple subjects.
Dear students, instead of having to prepare for various projects and studying for different exams, create one magazine that combines all of your knowledge and tools needed. Look at how these subjects interact with each other, rather than keeping it all separate.
Create a step-by-step guide book
We found that the best way to start this project is to create a step-by-step guide book containing all the information the students will need to complete the project. The guide book will be used for students to complete exercises for each subject while learning to plan accordingly. We suggest teachers should also try out the makerspace first and then based on your experiences, write out the do's and don'ts for students. You could also create some example pages for your students to copy into their own magazine pages or even create a full magazine template for them to use.
We propose The Guide Book should contain but is not limited to:
- Exercises per subject and/or topic
- Schedule with weekly tasks
- Timetable example
- Introduction to Jilster's makerspace
- Example pages made in the makerspace
Students can also take inspiration from magazines in stores or magazines they may have at home. They can bring them into class and exchange ideas.
Assignment and exercise ideas for a magazine project
There are many ways for schools to implement the magazine project into their curriculum.
For example, one school had the magazine graded on content for history, spelling and grammar for Dutch, and design and creativity for art. One magazine project graded in three different ways. Below are just a few ideas and inspiration for various assignments and exercises that students can complete for a magazine project.
- Book report
- Letter to publisher
- Organizing an event with a guest speaker, giving a presentation on a specific topic
- Attending a presentation on a topic organized by other students
- Watch and review a movie on a specific topic
- Visit and review a museum
- Look up specific dishes and add a recipe
- Create a themed magazine cover
- Recreate a specific painting or photo
Make it fun
You could even make the project into a little competition. Choose three of the best magazines to be displayed during a special event. We found that adding a competitive element into the project improves students overall performance. The magazines can also be used as promotional tools for prospective students who come in to visit the school during Open Houses/ Open Days.
Takeaways and tips before you get started
- Combine multiple subjects to reduce workload: work together with colleagues
- Create a step-by-step guide book for the project and add mini instructions on how to use the makerspace
- Add magazine appropriate exercises and assignments for each subject
- Make it fun
Some general tips:
- Take your time with this project. It may take longer than you think.
- Arrange a meeting for your colleagues to introduce the makerspace and how it works
- When its grading time, you can do so using the custom link to the online version of the magazine
- A magazine project can be used for a variety of subjects and topics