Part of Unit: Careers in Photography
Lesson Plan Overview / Details
Students will learn the elements to consider when buying a camera, shop online and choose. Give everyone a $1,000 bill and get started. Students will be able to differentiate between fixed focus, prosuma and professional cameras as well as the difference between optical and digital zoom.
- 15 Minutes
- Reading and worksheet
- 30 Minutes
- 20 Minutes
- Research and writing
- 39 Minutes
California Career and Technical Education Standards
California Academic Content Standards (Reinforced)
Objectives and Goals
- The student will apply their knowledge of the capability of digital cameras by choosing the correct camera for a defined use.
- The student will present this information in the form of a high school level 3 paragraph essay.
Activities in this Lesson
- Hand money to students as they come into class - Hooks / Set
Teacher - Print attached handout on green paper. It is two sided and one sheet has two handouts. Print enough so that each student gets one. Be ready to hand them out as the students walk into class. Tell them that we are buying a camera today.
One side is a $1,000 bill, and the other side has a list of questions to think about when buying a camera.
Have students sit down and fill out the questions on the back of the $1,000.
- Play money - front and back [ Download ]
- Read chapter and answer worksheet - Guided Practice
To prepare for this lesson, have students read the chapter and answer the questions in the worksheet at the end.
- Photo Course, Chapter one [ Download ] Chapter on types of digital cameras
Lecture comparing Digital Single Lens Reflex against simple Point and Shoot, covering megapixels, optical and digital zoom and many camera features.
- Buy that camera - Independent Practice
Which camera shall I choose?
Your dream has come true. You have up to $1000 to buy a digital camera. You may not keep the change. Using the worksheet together done in class, do an internet search and write three paragraphs to explain why you chose this camera. Please use a high school level of grammar, spelling and writing. Be prepared to discuss your purchase.
Camera brand name and style
Image sensor size in megapixels
Professional, Prosuma, point and shoot, video still or specialty
Optical zoom and Digital zoom
Describe what you think you will use this camera for.
What kind of creative controls are there?
What kind of automatic controls are there?
Special features: Waterproof? Other? Printer comes with it?
Include special features that you discover.
Where can you buy this camera?
How much does it cost?
What accessories would you buy if you had more money?
- What camera to buy essay samples.pdf [ Download ] Examples of student work
- Digital zoom
- A simulated zoom. The physical length of the lens does not change. The camera pre-crops the central portion of an image and reduces its resolution giving an appearance of zooming in. Image quality is degraded and contains increased noise.
- Image sensor
- CCD and CMOS Sensors How to capture light with a digital camera The camera's image sensor is what captures light when the shutter opens. There are two primary types of sensors used in digital cameras today: one is called a CCD (Charge Coupled Device) and the other is called CMOS (Complimentary Metal Oxide Semiconductor). How does a CCD or CMOS work? The camera's image sensor is the equivalent of the film that you would buy for your regular camera. A photograph is captured on film when the film is exposed to light. A digital image sensor converts light into electrical signals, which are then converted into an image inside of the camera using the camera's image processor.The Basic Rule of Thumb Arguments abound about why CCD and CMOS sensors differ from each other, but this should not sway your decision-making when you're comparing different cameras. Look for other features first, then find out what type of sensor the camera has
- Problems emerge when you increase the size of a digital photograph. The more you increase the size, the more you begin to notice all of the tiny dots. The digital image is revealed for what it really is. This is especially true when you want to print your digital photo. While you may not be able to see the individual pixels on your computer monitor, you will definitely notice them when the image is printed. Printers require a LOT of pixels to create a decent photographic print.
- Optical zoom
- Optical zoom magnifies the size of an image by adjusting the lens. Unlike digital zoom, optical zoom enlarges the subject without sacrificing resolution.
- Point and shoot
- Pocketable cameras are easy to use, and a great choice for the casual photographer usually with a fixed focal length.
- Professional camera
- Professional photographers require a level of customization, performance, and ruggedness. Compatibility with a broad range of accessories and studio equipment is also a must. They require a serious investment, but in exchange they'll give you state-of-the-art imaging technology and the breadth of creative control you need to produce professional results.
- Prosumer camera
- Producers or professionals using consumer-grade products.Consumers using retired professional-grade products.Consumer targeted products, at consumer prices, but containing some professional-grade functionality.Progressive consumer.
- Focal Length and Zoom Capture the whole image or focus in on the tiny details The focal length of the lens (measured in millimeters) and the zoom ratio determine how much or how little of the scene you are photographing will appear in the final photograph. When you want to show the whole scene, you use a short focal length and when you want to focus on a detail you use a long focal length. Fixed Focal Length vs. Zoom A fixed focal length lens cannot zoom in and out on a scene. If you want the subject of your photo to be larger, you have to walk closer. If you want it smaller, you have to walk away. Common fixed focal length lenses are 35mm and 50mm. Zoom lenses have variable focal lengths. For example, a typical zoom may be able to change from 28mm (wide-angle) to 135mm (zoom or telephoto). The benefit here is that if you cannot walk toward or away from your subject (maybe you're on the edge of a cliff) then the only way you can get closer is by zooming in with your lens.
Computer Lab needed
This lesson needs student computer access to complete research.
I have found that a lot of times, after a couple of months of high school photography, parents call and want to purchase a camera for their student as a gift. It the student has completed this lesson, it is easy to recommend a suitable camera.
- Assessment Types:
Here is a rubric to guide you in the grading process. It helps to show it to the students ahead of time so they are clear on expectations for the assignment.
- Rubric for Buy my camera [ Download ] Rubric to make grading easier