Teachers are always seeking out new ways to present student work that students, parents, and teachers will love. One way to showcase stellar, meaningful, or significant work might be to display it or send it home with the student. But teachers know that work can become damaged, misplaced, or even forgotten when student handling is involved. So many teachers choose to memorialize student artwork, assignments, writing, or other valuable creations in classroom anthology printing. Creating, publishing, and keeping an anthology may seem like just another way to highlight student work or maybe just be something for the parents or students to hold on to as a school-year memory, but school anthologies contribute much more to the student, teacher, and school experience. Let’s take a look at how teachers use school anthologies and why you should consider classroom anthology printing for your classroom.
What Is Classroom Anthology Printing?
Teachers can plan, organize, edit, and ultimately publish a book of their student’s work called a classroom anthology. The anthology is typically bound like a book and intended as a keepsake for years to come. The book itself is usually created so the contents are clearly organized and may contain a table of contents or another easy method of structuring the included student work. The content of the anthology can be as varied as the classrooms themselves and could be:
- A classroom story that each student contributes to.
- Individual stories that each student writes.
- Each student’s assignment on a given topic or content area.
- A special piece of artwork or other design by each student.
- A project or product that demonstrates the culmination of a student’s abilities or efforts for a subject.
- A themed assignment by each student showcasing each student’s skills.
5 Reasons Why You Need Classroom Anthology Printing
While there are plenty of reasons for creating a lasting volume containing students’ best work, we’ve come up with a list of the top five reasons why you need classroom anthology printing this year.
1. Anthologies Develop Student Confidence
Being a student means learning new concepts day in and day out, but not all students master concepts easily. Anthologies are an excellent platform to showcase student growth and content mastery throughout a year or school term. While every student may not always feel proud of the work they do every day as they practice and learn new, sometimes challenging new concepts, anthology publishing provides a place to keep and exhibit a student’s best work or culmination of their learning for them and their families. Students will be proud of the hard work it took to finalize their contribution to the book, boosting their confidence in themselves and their academic accomplishments.
2. They Are Excellent Student Motivators
Every teacher agrees that some students are more challenging to motivate to do their best work than others. But students that understand their work, project, or final draft of their assignment will be published in an anthology and be visible to parents and classmates forever usually will find the motivation to do their best. As teachers present the assignment, practice, editing, and revising processes, students will become excited about what they are working on and begin to see how this work is different from their regular, day-to-day assignments or practice work. Students can look over the work from previous classes to see how well those students performed on their published work, adding to their excitement and potential motivation for the special project they are undertaking. Typically low motivated students will be able to see how their work matters in the final outcome of the anthology publishing process.
3. They Can Be Used to Assess Content
Teachers seeking fresh new alternatives to formative and summative assessments can use the development of an anthology as meaningful assessments for their students. Initial understanding of the project, first drafts, and other small chunks of the activity can become formative assessments that demonstrate how well a student is learning the steps and stages of the project. Then, their final draft that is considered for submission in the anthology is a perfect opportunity for a summative assessment to show the overall understanding and growth the student experienced in this process. Students whose final drafts are lacking could be given extra support and direction to polish their final draft, extending the learning opportunities further. Looking at class anthology printing as a set of lessons to integrate into any classroom’s curriculum is a fun and creative way to meet current curriculum goals while also producing a lasting class book that everyone can enjoy.
4. Parents Cherish Anthologies
Of course, parents enjoy holding on to projects and work that their students have created. But in reality, keeping every piece of paper is not feasible or desirable for many families. When a classroom anthology is created, however, parents not only have a durable copy of their child’s work but they also have a memory of the child’s class, classmates, and curriculum for that year. When choosing items to keep from any given school year, parents often struggle with what to hold on to, but a published book with a copy of their child’s best work included will remain a keepsake long after the paper crafts and papers from that year have been relegated to the trash bin.
5. They Can Be a Fundraiser
One great aspect of utilizing these types of books in a school is that not only does the classroom anthology printing not have to cost the educator anything, but they can also become a money maker for the classroom, funding needed supplies or other class activities through their sale. Teachers can create the class books and ask parents or caregivers to fund the anthology printing costs based on how many books are ordered for the class, simply paying for the book and associated costs equally. Or teachers can use the opportunity to make the books a class fundraiser by deciding upon a price that will not only cover the book’s printing costs but also provide extra funds for the class. Educators can use the fundraising computations in classroom lessons covering addition, multiplication, percentage, and money as well to further broaden the applicable lessons learned from this class project.
Creating Classroom Anthology Printing: How to Get Started
If creating an anthology out of your students’ work sounds like a great fit for your classroom, creating one is a fairly simple process.
- Choose the book content. Decide what project or assignment you want your students to include in the book.
- Use a free template to format the book and its contents according to your class’s needs.
- Choose the best binding for your project. Perfect bound books have a smooth spine and are ideal for including class or school name, year or book content title. Plastic Coil and Wire-O bindings utilize rings to secure the book together instead of adhesive and can be a great option for younger students since the pages will lay flat when the book is opened. For smaller projects, Saddle Stitch binding that employs staples to secure the booklet may be the best option.
- Design a great cover design for your book. Hold an artwork contest with your students or get design help to make sure the cover reflects your book’s theme and overall feel.
- Enlist the services of an established digital printing company like Dazzle Printing to make the ordering and printing process go smoothly.
- Decide if you want to make the books a fundraiser and then settle on the book pricing.
- Take student orders to get an accurate count of the books you will need to order.
- Place your order and wait for your gorgeous classroom anthology printing to arrive.
Anthologies Add Value to the Educational Experience
Anthologies are not just a fun classroom activity for students to do even though your students are sure to enjoy the process. Anthologies can also be a meaningful addition to any academic experience as well as provide teachers with real, measurable learning as well as provide funds for the classroom while giving parents a memento of their child’s work. Perfect for students of any age or ability, class anthology books are an excellent way for students to keep learning the necessary curriculum while having fun and striving for the goal of producing a noteworthy book in the process.