The teacher and librarian will complete this lesson collaboratively. The librarian can complete the introduction of the assignment and participate in the creation, modification, and delivery of formative assessments. The graphic design teacher will work with students on creating their book covers using a design program such as Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Publisher, or any software that allows desktop publishing and formatting. The teacher will assess students based on design class standards.
PROCEDURES FOR COMPLETION:
The class visits the library. The librarian discusses with students the importance of the book cover in marketing-relating the idea to commercials, theatrical trailers, cereal boxes, etc. A book cover should inspire someone to choose the book to borrow or purchase.
Students then search the library shelves for examples of book covers that they find both appealing and not appealing. As a group, the students complete a list of reasons why book covers would inspire them to read or purchase a book (or leave it on the shelf).
Pull (or have students pull) a cart of fiction/nonfiction books that have unattractive or dated covers that could have a higher checkout rate if the cover were designed differently. For our projects, one year we chose fiction titles, and the next year we chose nonfiction titles. We pulled books we thought would be appealing to students based on subject, but that had covers that were decidedly not appealing Students (library aides, reading groups, etc.) could easily help in selection process.
Students in the design class should be allowed to select their own book to redesign. To avoid redundancy (and improve student assessment), we suggest that no two students in a class redesign the same cover. Students are not required to read the books prior to completing their book covers.