Do you have any good tips for teaching children about photography?

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17  Answers

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Why, yes I do! My three year old got a Discovery Kids camera last year for Christmas. I highly recommend it! It's a really durable camera that can take a beating. While she absolutely LOVES taking photos with it - on off days, it has also taken on the life of a drum, a ball and a car. And it still works. I think the key to teaching children about photography is keeping it simple and easy for them to do. This particular camera is very user friendly and the sheer joy she gets by creating her own photo and then being able to see it - is incredible. She is also quite fond of taking photos with my iPhone (surprise, surprise!). There are many days where I am scrambling around my house looking for my phone and I will find her curled up in her little corner of the world going through photos, shot by shot. She takes such delight in reliving her recent trip to the beach or the tickle-fest from last night. It's amazing how children really do appreciate and love photography at such a young age. So I say, embrace it - get them their own camera and encourage them to take photos right along with you, let them reminisce and enjoy the photos that you have and most of all - keep creating and the building the life that you want your kids to capture and remember!

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I gave Dustyn one of my old cameras, and he loves taking photos with it. I kind of let him do his own thing. He seems to enjoy it more.

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Use a cheap point and shoot camera use nature this is the best way to make kids awareness of their surroundings you will also be teaching mindfulness and stillness. Teach them about light and the how sun shines at different times of the day. Photography is a great source to teach kids science.

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Provide the child with a digital camera made for kids (one that can endure being dropped), and let the child play with it. Show them that they can take photos of little things close up, as well as wide-ranging landscape photos. It's fun to see what they come up with.

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Children can be great photographers! The first thing I teach is how to hold the camera properly when taking a shot to avoid camera shake, and remind them to stop and stand like a tripod when they shoot. They can get excited in the moment and then end up disappointed with blurry images. Teaching them about the rule of thirds and how to create interesting compositions will provide a lot of inspiration. I'd also show them how to use color and find complimentary colors on the color wheel to create dynamic photos. There little creative minds will take it from there!

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For me, I've learned from exposing my children to both being in front of and behind the camera. Any chance they get, I give them a camera and tell them to take pictures so we can show people what we are doing. I make it a story. I tell them that their bubbie and saba can't be here but would love for them to take some photos to show them. Put the camera in their hands. Let them have fun.

I recently gave my 5 year old daughter my old Canon 5d classic. She loves taking it everywhere and taking photos.

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There was one time where I was asked to take photos of my sons pre-school. My son was so upset that I was taking photos of anyone else besides him! To help him feel okay, we gave him a toy camera and he followed me around and helped me pose the other kids. Since then, he'll often come with me on shoots with other children. He helps break the ice and keep them laughing, and knows how to help me pose.

As the mother of a curious toddler, I would say to keep them as involved as possible. Explain what you're doing, and ask how they feel about photographs and if they like them, and why. Do they make them happy? Sad? Angry? Ask what they think the other people in the photograph are feeling. This will help them understand why you take photographs, and help them learn to express themselves through photography.

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I cannot wait to teach my children about photography. Even at just under two years old, my son walks around with my iPhone saying "cheeese". Though, I don't usually have my clients to say "cheese" I must say it to him subconsciously. (It IS one of his favorite foods.)

Speaking of the iPhone, it (or your preferred smart phone) is a great place to start when teaching your children about photography. After all, it's what most of us are using to capture the everyday moments anyway. So, hand over that old smart you have just sitting in your desk drawer and show them the ropes.
Once they’ve got the how-to’s down, teach them about perspective. Have them look at the world through the camera. Take them outside or into their room. Play a game of “I spy” and have them find objects not looking away from the phone. Give them objects up high, down low, close to them and far away. Then, have them capture those objects from their perspective. Later when looking through the photos with them, ask questions like “did you take a picture of the top, bottom, front or back?” For older kids you could even ask how they would change it to get a photo they would like better/is more visually appealing. Later, or as they get older and more camera savvy, you can teach them about isolating a single subject or group of subjects from the background as part of the game.

For kids who are older and able read well, give them a camera or smart phone send them on a scavenger hunt in your yard or neighborhood. Items on the list could include things like a yellow flower, a black mail box, a white truck, then to add the emotional connection photography brings by put things on the list like: one thing that makes you smile, something that was a gift, or a person you look up to. If it’s your child you are teaching, then you’ll know what things trigger emotion in them so add those to the list too in a creative way!

While completing these tasks, when they are ready the questions will come about the technicalities of the camera. When you are looking through the photos they've taken, show them the camera settings that would give them a little more light, or a better focus. Even though you are their teacher, if they decide photography is their thing too, remember their style and perspective may be different from yours. Always let them be creative and show them what stands out about their work!

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Let them be involved! Allow them to create poses, be themselves and add props to the mix. Kids are creative by nature, don't stifle it!

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My daughter, whom just turned 11 in late May, has started to take an interest in Photography. As a mother with a passion for photography it is incredibly gratifying to know that I make my job look fun enough for my children to be possibly interested in it, because let's face it. If it isn't fun...they just aren't interested. My biggest tip would be to pace yourself. Trying to learn photography myself was frustrating. Trying to translate something so complicated to children can burn them out quickly. My best bit would be to find a good starter digital camera. I am hoping to teach my child how to shoot in manual mode, so when she gets older she has the tools to pursue it seriously if she wants to. Kids are very visual. They are also quicker learners than adults seem to be in my experience. Finding ways to make a game of things, and really learning to take it one thing at a time is best.

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My fourteen year old daughter is an amazing nature photographer. She displayed an interest in photography when she was ten or so. I started taking her as my assistant on my newborn shoots. For her 11th birthday we helped her buy a used Canon Rebel. I had her start shooting in auto, then she quickly moved on to aperture priority. Now she shoots in full manual. Kids catch on quick. She has her own Flickr account with some amazing images.

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I think it's best when photography is a part of their lives even before they actually learn how to properly use a camera. When they see you using a camera and photographing scenery and people, you can show them what you are doing, what you're looking at and the resulting masterpiece, your photo. Let them use their own camera to play and practice. Print their photos so they can be proud of their art.

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I really think its more about giving a child a camera and letting them learn for themselves. I mean my kids are 2 and 4 years old so I got a cheap little point and shoot. And my son goes crazy with it. He also loves to take my iPhone and take a bazillion pictures. But I figure he needs to learn his style before we get all technical.

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I start by telling my own kids to follow light. Where is the light? Where are the shadows? Then how we can move our feet to get closer to what we are trying to capture. Those are 2 first tips that really help children take better photographs.

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I only have a little 3 year old, however he has loved learning from me. I don't hesitate to give him the camera so he can practice and feel comfortable with the camera. And I always will pose for him if he asks.

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Just give them a camera (a point-and-shoot to begin with) and give them free rein. You'd be surprised at what they could capture and how! Give them simple assignments --e.g. Today, let's take pictures of things that begin with S (or all things yellow)... and let them have fun.

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Involve your children in photography by talking them through the details of capturing a great shot. Point out amazing light, shadows, geometry, and lines. Show them great compositions of artwork through various media by studying the works of artists, both contemporary and ancient. Art appreciation goes a long way towards opening the eyes of your children to see the world around them. When children are ready, equip them with a point and shoot camera to experiment. Let that freedom with the point and shoot slowly slide into readiness to pick up a DSLR. Then teach them everything you know!

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