ASSINIBOIA - Readers may notice some very interesting ads in the May 26th edition of the Assiniboia Times, courtesy of Laurie Hawkins’ Grade 7/8 class.
Working with local business, the students have learned about the process of building an ad from conception, design, to final proof for print.
“We talk about all the elements they have to consider,” Hawkins explained. “Some of them had very specific criteria that the businesses had said, others were very general.”
Some of those design elements include use of colour and branding in their designs, and why those things are important not only for the particular business, but in attracting the eye of those reading the paper.
“One of our advertising notes that we’ve picked up on is that sometimes less is more,” Hawkins said. “It’s not always about filling that whole square with maximum information, it’s highlighting what they (the business) have.”
Each student is tasked with designing two ads for the business they’ve chosen, which also provides variety, and another option to explore other aspects that business might offer or wish to focus on with their ad.
Hawkins noted that this project has also sparked enthusiasm with some students who otherwise may not be artistically inclined.
“I have kids that are not always gung-ho in art, but they’re gung-ho for this because they’re going to be in the paper!,” she said.
The importance of meeting a newspaper’s hard deadline is another factor in the project, and that the businesses have invested real money into the effort.
“You’re meeting a newspaper’s deadline. You have until May 16. The business has paid to have an ad in that paper,” said Hawkins. “It gives them that taste of reality, that you’ve got to meet that hard line.”
The pay off? Seeing that hard work in print. It’s the literal final word, and acid test of the entire project - for all involved.
“They love seeing their work and knowing people are going to see that,” Hawkins noted. “It makes them feel important for that week.”
Hawkins added that this project also allows her students to become aware of different businesses in Assiniboia; maybe some that they’ve not visited before.
“It helps to open the eyes to my students of what businesses are in town,’ she said. “It really creates that connection between the students and the community.”