Photography - Schoolhouse Teachers


Length: 30 Weeks
Includes: Lessons and Student Photo Gallery
Age/Grade: Elementary – High School

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How to Use This Course’s Photography course is taught through text-based lessons and original photography. Topics covered are the functions of the camera, composition and elements of design, stretching your skills, and more. This course is best taken in the order it is presented to develop your skills in a way that builds on skills previously acquired. If all 30 weeks of this course are taken and assignments completed, the student has earned one-half credit toward their high school transcript. As always, please be aware of your own state’s academic standards. Upon completion of the course, students can continue to stretch their skills by joining Michele for weekly photography challenges.

To submit your photographs for consideration for inclusion in the Student Photo Gallery, please email Michele Peterson at

When you’re ready, come join me for a weekly Photography Challenge!

Go to the student photo gallery.

Course Introduction

Welcome to photography! Are you ready to move beyond snapshots?

This class is for anyone with any camera, and for all levels of experience. We’ll start out covering the basics of how to use your camera and, also, how to creatively capture the moments of life that God has placed before us. There will be an assignment that corresponds to each lesson, various projects that will help you to grow as a photographer, and a gallery in which you can share your photos with the rest of the class.

We’ll progress through thirty lessons and stretch your abilities. We’ll learn about food photography, portraits, landscape photography, and so much more. Even if you already have a good understanding of your camera and photography, I hope that you will join us each week, to keep practicing and improving your skills, and to learn how to use your talents to bless others.

Text-based lessons, Michele Peterson’s original photography, and a Student Photo Gallery.

Week 1: Introduction to Photography
Week 2: Aperture
Week 3: Shutter Speed
Week 4: ISO
Week 5: Manual Mode
Week 6: Back to Basics
Week 7: Creative Composition
Week 8: Be Ye Thankful
Week 9: White Balance
Week 10: Projects
Week 11: Lens Length
Week 12: Elements of Design—Color
Week 13: Elements of Design—Line
Week 14: Elements of Design—Patterns and Texture
Week 15: Days of Creation—Light Direction and Flash
Week 16: Days of Creation—The Sky
Week 17: Days of Creation—Landscapes
Week 18: Days of Creation—Sun, Moon, and Stars/Exposure Compensation
Week 19: Days of Creation—Birds and Fish
Week 20: Days of Creation—Animals
Week 21: Days of Creation—People
Week 22: Editing
Week 23: Food Photography
Week 24: Walking Around Photography
Week 25: Close-Up Photography
Week 26: Themes in Photography
Week 27: Metering Modes and Picture Styles
Week 28: Stretching Your Mind
Week 29: Blessing Others
Week 30: The Final Project

This course is best taken as a one-half credit course. This is aligned with the HSLDA-based recommendation, for an elective class, to log 120 hours for a full credit, 60 for a half-credit. This course is geared to about 60 hours of work if all 30 weeks of lessons are taken and assignments are completed.

Suggested projects are optional, unless families choose to replace an assignment with a project, for any given lesson. Otherwise, you are free to pick and choose as many projects as you would like to complete the course.

– Michele Peterson

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