The Ultimate Classroom Resource for Teaching About Comics

The popularity of comics is at an all-time high due to recent blockbuster movies. The Guardian have put together a list of resources that will no doubt excite young children:

Resources from Guardian Teacher Network

Creating comic books with Photoshop: workshop
A KS4 workshop, also suitable for KS3, using Photoshop versions 5 and 6 to create comic. Great resources and lesson ideas from Culture Street.

How I make comics by Sarah McIntyre
Children’s illustrator and writer Sarah McIntyre shares her creative process, breaking it down step by step so that your students can create their own mini comic. Perfect for printing out too.

How to draw Vern and Lettuce by Sarah McIntyre
Here, Sarah breaks down the steps and shapes she uses to draw her comic characters.

How to draw Vern and Lettuce (again) by Sarah McIntyre
This time Sarah share a step-by-step, shape-by-shape guide to drawing Vern the sheep. Plenty of scope for students to add their own stamp too.

How comics have transformed the image of science and scientists
This is a printable handout of an Education Guardian article exploring the cultural impact of comics.

Creating evil characters in stories
All superheroes have a nemesis. This lesson explores how to bring baddies to life in stories. It can be used as a one-off lesson or as part of a scheme on creative writing/reading skills.

Which books could teachers use to encourage reluctant readers?
From Spiderman comics to the classics, what was the book that fired your love for reading? Our readers share their favourites in our open thread.

Best of the web

Comics in the classroom: 100 tips, tools, and resources for teachers
I stumbled this indispensable library of links and resources on one of my new favourite education technology blogs – ICT for Teaching & Learning in Falkirk Primary Schools – in a post called Comics in the classroom – online tools.

Make your own comics
Step-by-step guide and range of layouts.

Making comics with your own photos
This online tutorial explains how to use the Pages application to turn your own photography into comic books.

Buzz! Whiz! Bang! Using comic books to teach onomatopoeia

Teaching philosophy with Spider-Man
Fascinating feature exploring the place of pop culture in the curriculum. Has a higher education focus, but there are some transferrable ideas.

Using student generated comic books in the classroom
For more theory on the how and why to use comics in class, take a look at this 2002 paper from the Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy.

I also found lots of blogs dedicated to role of comics and graphic novels in learning – give me a shout in the comments if I’ve missed your site or a personal favourite.
Loads of ‘how to draw’ pdfs – ranging from characters and animals to backgrounds – that you could print for use in arts lessons. Also includes a brilliant activity on analysing and comparing comic texts.

Teaching with Comics
This blogger is “interested in exploring the use of cartoons, comics, and graphic novels to promote literacy”. Recent posts include Learning vocabulary visually and a piece that answers the question Why comics?

The Graphic Classroom
A really long list of suggested reads, categorised for age group and suitability. Handy.

Comics in the Classroom
Features reviews of new texts and interviews from students and children about the comics they love.

Click on the link to read Who Said Grammar Isn’t Important?

Click on the link to read Why Spelling is Important

Click on the link to read Captain Phonics to the Rescue!

Click on the link to read the Phonics debate.


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