Last week my girls and I were attempting to gather some leaves for an upcoming project at their school. They were reading the book Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert and creating their own. However, the weather has been unseasonably warm so our leaves hadn’t turned quite yet. We found a few brown and red, but mostly green leaves. Which is fine…but…it got me thinking about ways to extend the project digitally.
For this lesson, I suggest you purchase and read aloud the story Leaf Man. Click my affiliate link to buy it from Amazon:
I also suggest reading or displaying the following related books for inspiration:
After students can gather or bring in “fall” items from home like leaves and acorn tops to make a leave man collage. I do feel that the hands on collage with real materials aspect is still important – especially for young children. However you can continue and extend the project by having students use the free app Pic Collage or Pic Collage Kids.
How to get leaves for the leaf man on Pic Collage
First open the app and have students touch to open the Web Search. Then students should search the term, “Leaf png.”
Sneak a little technology fluency in by explaining what a png is – a file type with a transparent background. You will be so excited when down the line your students refer to a png file, which is what mine did last year. For example, we were working on a Google Slides project on laptops and one student asked if searching Google Images for “school png” would work the same as on Pic Collage. That transfer of knowledge from platforms and devices is a key component of digital literacy.
For older students you can have them search for png’s specific leave types. You can also narrow it down by searching for color; for example “red leaf png.”
Pic Collage lets you touch on multiple images to insert. After inserting your images you will have a leaf pile to play with. Students can touch and arrange their leaves into any shape.
Adding accessories to the leaf man on pic Collage
Students can also use the Web Search tool to add eyes, mouths, and accessories. You can have them use items from nature like sticks, acorns, twigs or other images. They can search for png files or use the clipping tool to trim around the item chosen.
Finally, students can insert a back and use the search tool in the background menu to find a background to go with their picture.
digital story telling using the pic Collage leaf man
Extend the project further by having students write a story about their picture. Students could even make many pictures then upload into a slideshow app like Shadow Puppet Edu to tell a digital story!