Students love Comic Sans. Elementary learners love seeing it on their homework pages. Some skeptics might say they like it because they don't know any better, but in fact they know enough. Kids respond to Comic Sans' "non-font" status. It looks like child chalk, not parent script. It is not fussy, it is not adult-ish, it is not foreign to a marble notebook, and it is not counter-intuitive to a child's handwriting.
|Source: Comic Sans Criminal|
Most tech-types disdain Comic Sans for its overuse and undersophistication. There is a popular Ban Comic Sans website, a Kill Comic Sans video game, a Comic Sans Project Tumblr, a Comic Sans criminal pledge, and a satirical Comic Sans song.
Michael Stevens of Vsauce, however, has produced the brilliant "A Defense Of Comic Sans" video that explores the reasons for Comic Sans' pop-culture proliferation. As he notes, "when words and letters are printed, they have to wear the clothing of a typeface, a font family. We don't always think of it this way, but you cannot type without using a typeface."
In essence, the video offers a quirky (and surprisingly scholarly) history of how typefaces ("Textura") emerged from the Guttenberg press, and how French pieces that had to be melted ("fondue") ended up establishing the nomenclature of letter forms ("fonts"). Other fascinating revelations include the reasons for the lower- and uppercase names and the actual origins of Comic Sans in the cartoon imagination of Melinda Gates.
If you show us a blog that's written in Times New Roman, we'll show you a blog that kids aren't reading. Try an experiment in class: tell your students to open up Microsoft Word or Pages, and tell them to pick a font for their writing. We'll bet our morning coffee they don't pick TNR.
As digital natives, kids today are bombarded with ads in YouTube clips and web banners. They aren't yet trained to dissect and repel these media influences, but they see them, and they know them, and they make choices about them. That's why students should care about typography. Because in the same way that glitzy logos attract their respect, other fonts could give credence to their creative in-class projects and could boost their grades in open-ended PBL endeavors.
|Source: Smashing Magazine|
If you tell students that a font will raise their grade, they'll listen. If you tell students to choose a design scheme that will complement their message, they'll skip the default blueprint and instead choose an inventive layout.
Students think Gothic or Roman fonts are old-fashioned, until they realize that Juicy Couture for years has intentionally been playing off the heritage reputation of an over-styled letterface in its tween marketing campaign. A realization of the power of type could mean wondrous outcomes in student projects, such as Prezi presentations or iMovie embeds or Tumblr pages.
|Source: Smashing Magazine|
The following resources offer terrific examples for student learning and in-class use. The first link is particular instructive in laying out the essential definitions and distinctions of font choices:
- Learn The Basics: 25+ Sites And Resources To Learn Typography
- How To Kill A Typeface
- 25 Must-See Examples Of Kinetic Typography
- Typographical Infographics That'll Make You Go "Wow!"
- Expand Your Typography Repertoire: 11 Great Web Font Sites
- New High-Quality Free Fonts
- How To Choose The Right Face For A Beautiful Body
- Font Wars: A Story On Rivalry Between Type Foundries
|Source: 1st Web Designer|