Learning is fun, but when you combine learning with snacktime, that’s even better! This week, we’re talking about the Rule of Thirds (another stop on our trip through the alphabet with our Photography ABCs series). What is the rule of thirds? It’s a photography concept for creating visually interesting images — we’ll get into that shortly.
Read on to see how we’ll be using crackers to recreate the rule of thirds!
The Rule of Thirds
First, let’s talk about the rule of thirds. Here’s a definition I found at Cambridge in Colour:
The rule of thirds states than an image is most pleasing when its subjects or regions are composed along imaginary lines which divide the image into thirds — both vertically and horizontally.
Basically, you take an image, and divide it into thirds, both ways. Where the lines cross, those are the places that you should try to have visual interest. So, if you took a picture of your dog running at the park, you would want to make sure that it was at one of those spots when you look through the camera.
It’s a little bit easier to see than to explain. Take a peek at this picture below (used with permission from Pixabay.com). The image is deliberately composed so that both the bird and the wire are following the rule of thirds. I’ve included a second image which illustrates this, as the blue lines divide the image into thirds both horizontally and vertically.
The wire is running horizontally across the image, placed at the lower third of the image. You might notice that the bird is slightly to the right of the vertical blue line — but look at its eye. That eye has been placed at the spot where two blue lines intersect. Those intersections are points of visual interest.
Okay, now onto the fun snack activity! This will help your kids visualize the concept of the Rule of Thirds. You probably have everything you need in your snack cabinet.
Supplies You’ll Need:
- 9 square crackers
- 9 rectangular crackers
- 4+ smaller snack items
- snack tray or cookie sheet
We used saltines, graham crackers (broken into the smaller sections), and goldfish crackers. But you could use any snack items that are square and rectangular. The goldfish could be replaced by any similarly sized snack item: raisins, nuts, or bite-sized candies. And, of course, you’ll need some sort of flat work surface. My kids love using cookie sheets, but if you have a small serving tray, that could work well too. It just has to be big enough for all the crackers to be spread out flat.
Rule of Thirds Activity Extension (for older kids)
Isn’t that cool? You can also extend this activity by having older kids draw lines through photos in magazines, creating the rule of thirds grid. Discuss whether the images adhere to the rule of thirds, if the most visually interesting things are found along either the grid lines or the intersections!
Join Betsy as she works through the alphabet in this educational series for kids… The ABCs of Photography! We’ll cover topics from A to Z, with activity ideas for both younger and older kids
Sign up for emails to get each week’s blog update delivered to your inbox, which will include future posts in this series.