Principles of Design Analysis
A lesson measuring design principles by quiz and hands-on application
Students will receive vocabulary for foundational design principles: composition, components, concept, placement, harmony, balance, proportion, scale, unity, rhythm, divisions, grouping, emphasis, contrast, balance, direction, spatial relationship, alignment, proximity and flow. They will evaluate why the design is effective and what particular elements contributed to the effective design. Students will then evaluate the samples of bad design principles, and analyze what principles are ineffective or missing from the samples. After analysis, students will determine three ways the ineffective samples can be improved with solid design principles.
- Students will critique a sample design and evaluate why the design is effective.
- Students will critique a sample design and evaluate what principles are missing or ineffective in the design.
- Students will improve a sample of a poorly designed spread by applying foundational design principles.
Common Core State Standards
|CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.2||Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze in detail its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.|
|CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.7||Analyze the representation of a subject or a key scene in two different artistic mediums, including what is emphasized or absent in each treatment (e.g., Auden’s “Musée des Beaux Arts” and Breughel’s Landscape with the Fall of Icarus).|
|CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.9||Analyze how an author draws on and transforms source material in a specific work (e.g., how Shakespeare treats a theme or topic from Ovid or the Bible or how a later author draws on a play by Shakespeare).|
|CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W-9-10.2d||Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to manage the complexity of a subject.|
|CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.5||Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1–3 up to and including grades 9–10 here.)|
|CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.6||Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products, taking advantage of technology’s capacity to link to other information and to display information flexibly and dynamically.|
Partnership for 21st Century Skills — Student Outcomes
|Learning and Innovation Skills||Create new and worthwhile ideas (both incremental and radical concepts)
Elaborate, refine, analyze and evaluate their own ideas in order to improve and maximize creative efforts
|Learning and Innovation Skills||Assume shared responsibility for collaborative work, and value the individual contributions made by each team member|
|Information, Media and Technology Skills||Understand and utilize the most appropriate media creation tools, characteristics and conventions|
|Life and Career Skills||Prioritize, plan and manage work to achieve the intended result
Set and meet goals, even in the face of obstacles and competing pressures
In Lesson 1.2, students will examine samples of spreads that use good design principles and poor design principles. They will evaluate why the design is effective and what particular elements contributed to the effective design. Students will then evaluate the samples of bad design principles, and analyze what principles are ineffective or missing from the samples. After analysis, students will determine three ways the ineffective samples can be improved with solid design principles.
1. Quiz — 20 minutes
Students will take a vocabulary quiz matching design principles terms to their definitions.
2. Application — 55 minutes
Distribute sample designs reflecting solid application of design principles for “good” design as well as ineffective or “bad” designs. Ask students to determine which is the “good” design and which is the “bad.” Students will use the Spread Evaluation worksheet in pairs so they can discuss their evaluations and offer feedback to each other. During the evaluation, move through the classroom to answer questions and direct partners with help as needed. After evaluating both spreads within the partnership, students will reconvene as a class and list traits on the board under both the “good” and the “bad” spread. Some groups will disagree on some of the evaluations, in which case they must provide supporting evidence based on the design principles. The class can then judge for itself whether the evaluation is valid or not based on the support given. Finally, after sharing opinions during class, students will spend the remainder of class fixing the “bad” spread. Working in the same pairs, students will choose three things to change on a “bad” spread that would lead to considerable improvement.
3. Closure — 5 minutes
Reconnect with students to note that it may take more than three changes to fix a spread entirely, but making even small changes can vastly improve even bad design.
At the end of class, collect the design evaluation forms and the three fixes for the “bad” design.
Quiz: Matching Terms Principles of Design
|Does not meet expectations(5 points)||Meets expectations(10 points)||Exceeds expectations(15 points)||Total points|
|Evaluation||The student struggles to evaluate a spread and has difficulty explaining why it is an example of good design or poor design.||The student adequately evaluates a spread and can give adequate reasons why it is an example of good or poor design principles.||The student can evaluate spreads for solid design principles, and can give clear reasoning why a spread demonstrates solid or poor design principles.||____ / 15|
|Total points||____ / 15|