Saturday, October 15, 2011

the Creative Syllabus

My school requires a syllabus for every class, every term.  Since I teach on block, and usually have 3 different "preps" (classes) per block, that means upwards of 12 syllabi each year!  (Not really, I repeat 3 or 4 classes once!)

I've been doing a "creative syllabus" for a couple of years now.  I started doing this because otherwise they're BORING to read aloud to them, and they almost never read along, AND I would find them left behind after the first day on desks and tables.  Grrr. 

So... enter the Comic Strip Syllabus:

This syllabus was created using the Marvel Superhero Comic site.  They have an awesome comic creator!  I love that you can download and save or print your finished comic strip or comic book (yes, you can write an entire storyline with multiple pages and layouts!)  This syllabus is for my Imaging (graphic arts) class.  I'm fairly confident they're going to love it!

For my Fashion class, I created their syllabus using

This site is also free and you can download your finished cover (many, many different themed covers already set up to edit with your own images and text!)  I did pay the $1.99 fee to download a high quality version though, since I loved it so much.  I might even print and frame or laminate it for my classroom walls. 

The illustration on my Fashion cover is from a Deviantart artist Bree Leman.  This print was free to download from her DV site, but she has some lovely artwork for purchase too (higher quality/resolution prints).

One thing you might note is how concise the information is.  Due to the format of a comic or magazine cover, you have to be short and to the point.  At first I was worried I wasn't "covering everything".  Then I discovered...I was too wordy before.  The kids stop listening after a while, and besides what do I REALLY WANT THEM TO KNOW??

That's what I concentrate on for the info on my creative syllabi.  The really important goods.  The rest is fluff and unnecessary (and can be replaced with cool graphics and fun comic book SPLATS!)

I hope this might inspire some of you to try a new format for your boring old syllabi! 


  1. This is great! As someone that will be student teaching next year I love this!

  2. SOOOO Cute and creative! Love them!!!

  3. I've been searching the web for creative syllabus styles! You're right; the traditional ones are boring, almost no one reads them, and they get left behind! Plus, this sets a great example of the level of creativity involved in a class. Thanks!

  4. ADORE! Thanks for the idea, I'm using this on the first day of class to refer the students to the website

  5. The link doesn't work for me. Do you think it is outdated? Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi there! Yes, sorry this is a few years old and both sites are gone now. Unfortunately!