Planned Parenthood of Central New Jersey

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Picture Me

An Innovative Photography and Self Esteem Program for Teens

Picture Me, an innovative photography and self esteem-building program was developed in 2001 by a PPCNJ educator and Photographer. Picture Me is a multi-session education program for teens offered by PPCNJ that utilizes photography as a way to teach life skills and build self-esteem.

Using photography is a powerful tool for engaging participants in the learning process. It is a means of self-expression: it requires learning new skills and develops visual thinking and understanding. Picture Me encourages teens to explore their world and their life choices.
Each group of participants chooses a theme for their picture taking. Themes include self-portrait, community, relationships, family, health and fitness. Participants write about the pictures they plan to take based on the theme and they have a lesson on how to take photographs. After their picture are developed the group discusses the photographs and what they learned about both the process of taking pictures the the content. Throughout the program, students write about their response to their own and others pictures, reflect on what they have learned, and identify what was difficult and what was enjoyable for them.

Students acquire skills that are useful for lifelong learning including: planning, visualization, use of equipment, and oral and written presentation of a project. Based on the theme, they learn about healthy relationships, what it means to be part of a family or community, and how to make healthy choices for their lives.