All Blog Posts (709)

The Essentials of Visual Literacy Learning Practice

Abstract: Research indicates that the use of visuals in teaching leads to a higher level of learning. Understanding the basic concepts of pedagogy in visual literacy is essential in order to effectively and efficiently design curriculum. Instructional designers need awareness of the following points to allow for good practices.

Effects of Instruction


Thomas, Place, and Hillyard advocate a university curriculum “that facilitates… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on September 16, 2009 at 12:30pm — No Comments

Visual Literacy and 21st Century Skills

What does it mean to be visually literate?

Can students interpret, use, appreciate, and create images and video using both conventional and 21st Century media in ways that advance thinking, decision-making, communication and learning?

enGauge 21st Century Skills for 21st Century Learners

Visual literacy skills are part of a larger skill set known as 21st Century Skills. This skill set is comprised of skills that embody 21st Century Literacies,… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on September 14, 2009 at 10:25am — No Comments

Painting Poetry: Using Visual Representation as a Response to Literature


Interpreting a poem using visual representation encourages students to think critically about what a poet is trying to say and the means he or she uses to convey these ideas. It also helps students better understand their own beliefs about a poem. As students create visual art and then write interpretations of the completed pieces, they enter into a relationship with the poem and construct meaningful connections by integrating personal experience, language, writing,… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on September 11, 2009 at 9:53am — No Comments

Drop That BlackBerry! Multitasking May Be Harmful

Ever find yourself chatting via instant messaging while checking your e-mail and surfing the Web? Well, don't pat yourself on the back for your super-productive behavior.

Expert: "The findings suggest there may be a cost associated with becoming an expert multitasker."

A new study suggests that people who often do multiple tasks in a variety of media -- texting, instant messaging, online video watching, word processing, Web surfing, and more -- do worse on tests in which… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on September 10, 2009 at 11:10am — No Comments

A Global View of Strategies for Visual Spatial Learners

I have been following the development of Linda Silverman’s model of the visual spatial learner (as distinct from auditory sequential) since the article “Invisible Gifts, Invisible Handicaps “was published in April 1994. The model proposes that some gifted children show the characteristics of a gifted visual spatial learner but have problems that prevent them from being good auditory-sequential learners. The model has become well accepted because many parents of gifted children who were… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on September 8, 2009 at 10:35am — No Comments

An Open Letter to JS Bach on Visual-Spatial Music

Dear Mr. Bach:

Thank you for taking time from your day to read my letter. I assume the subject of music continues to be of interest to you. If I am wrong, please feel free to toss this aside.

First, I would like to thank you for all that you have composed. Your music is of great importance to me. To give just one example, in 1991 my wife and I attended the Christmas Eve Concert at Carnegie Hall. A string orchestra played your Brandenburg Concerto No. 3. Throughout the… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on September 2, 2009 at 3:13pm — No Comments

Visual Learning Tools: Using Poster Prints in the Classroom

Educational research estimates that visual learners make up 65% of the population, while auditory learners and kinesthetic learners make up 30% and 5% respectively. Teachers should always keep this in mind when they are teaching in the classroom. Custom poster prints can be a great way for educators to integrate visual learning elements into the classroom. Here are 5 great ideas on how to utilize poster prints in the class room.

Science Example:

Conduct a visual… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 31, 2009 at 10:08am — No Comments

The Natural Honesty in Visual Communication

As teachers, we are constantly in search of that one modality we can best plug-in to. Some students are auditory learners…others, tactile, while many are visual learners. The challenge is to find the best approach in identifying that strength, then finding many ways to tap into it.

Visual learning is often the strength behind the success of the student. Using photography as a tool to enhance this strength is a wonderful way to captivate and motivate these students. Photography is a… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 26, 2009 at 10:03am — No Comments

Museum Education Strategies

In a museum setting, students and educators have a wonderful opportunity to look at original artwork up close and talk to museum staff who may have additional information about the artwork.

Follow an inquiry-based methodology in which they pose questions to inspire responses and thoughtful study of the artwork. This encourages viewers to spend an extended period of time studying and discussing a selection of photographs. As the guide facilitates the discussion, students make… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 24, 2009 at 9:57am — No Comments

Strategies for Building Visual Literacy

Active learning is key to the development of visual literacy skills. While students learn best through creative hands-on projects, discussing and reflecting on images deeply informs their image making and builds their understanding of how images communicate. Discussing images is an opportunity for learning interactively with peers and teachers and for making clear one’s ideas by talking through them.

To hold active discussions, educators need to develop their own questioning… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 21, 2009 at 11:17am — No Comments

Visually Literate Detectives

In London by Ernst Haas, we see many expressions of seeing: a glance, a stare, a regard, a study, and non-seeing—averted eyes, the backs of heads. We see pictures within pictures, each offering limited glimpses of life on London streets in 1951. At the same time that these mirrored reflections offer bits of information, the photograph withholds. The photograph invites and challenges us to see.

As visually literate detectives, we detect, decode, and synthesize the information from the… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 19, 2009 at 6:25pm — No Comments

Reflecting on Images

Spending time looking at and thinking about images is an activity that needs to be encouraged. In The Intelligent Eye, David Perkins proposes doing a “seeing,” or writing for 10 minutes a stream-of-conscious response to art. Part of this process involves asking yourself questions that focus more and more on specific attributes of the artwork, describing what you see—from the literal subject to the formal qualities—and then interpreting what you see. As Perkins says, “By looking longer and in… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 18, 2009 at 7:03pm — No Comments

Developing Visual Learning Skills

Visual imagery can play a powerful role in accelerating human learning. Complex verbal explanations can often be simplified through visual support – now made more accessible through new technologies. And organised learners use a range of low-tech techniques to make sure that their notes are well-ordered and easy to navigate. These include colour coding, post-it notes, highlighters, etc, to help categorise, prioritise and make the work user-friendly. Many of our students also use a range of… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 15, 2009 at 11:36am — No Comments

Science and Research on Visual Learning

Exploring vision, understanding and retention in the light of recent breakthroughs in our understanding of the workings of the brain and conclusions for brain friendly teaching.

Large demo materials create powerful learning environments and makes the displayed image seem important in itself. As a result of my work as image editor for our visual encyclopedias, I have been fascinated for years by the reactions of users as they initially browse through our… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 11, 2009 at 9:52am — No Comments

Teaching the Visual-Spatial Learning Disabled Child: When Moving About is Confusing

A child in your class does fine when he’s in one place, but moving around seems to leave him bewildered. He can’t find his way to the bathroom or to the people or things he is looking for. He has been in this school for two years now and this problem is ongoing. How can you help him?

As teachers, we are familiar with students who have trouble processing sound (they have auditory processing and/or language problems) or have trouble coordinating movements (they appear uncoordinated).… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 6, 2009 at 10:46am — No Comments

Photography: Addressing Media Exploration and Visual Literacy


Visual Literacy

Visual literacy is fundamental to the teaching of art in middle school and complements student exploration of the question, “What is Art?” This is one of the first questions asked in my art classes, generating answers ranging from “I don’t know!” to “Stuff in a museum?” to “It’s just self-expression!” These first tentative answers often reveal a lack of developed cognitive perception, mere lingering memories of elementary school art… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 4, 2009 at 1:10pm — No Comments

Visual Education: A New Language (January, 1937)

WHEN WILL THE MIDDLE AGES BE AT AN END? As soon as all men can participate in a common culture and the canyon between educated and uneducated people has disappeared. Life in that future day will be more fully lived and understood. Perhaps everyone will work as a specialist in his special field, but at the same time he will--he must--vividly take part in the common life, sharing understanding of and responsibility for the main problems of his world.

Our generation is opening the way… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on August 3, 2009 at 3:59pm — No Comments

A Thousand Words: Promoting Teachers' Visual Literacy Skills

We live in a visual world. Images and graphics have revolutionized the way we receive and process information, both within and beyond the classroom.

AS early as 1964, Marshall McLuhan spoke of the social evolution from "typographic" man, who relied on text as the primary means of information delivery to "graphics" man, whose thoughts, beliefs, and values were forged by images. Within this "revolution," as McLuhan called it, the camera replaced text as the ultimate… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on July 30, 2009 at 10:14am — No Comments

Creating a Virtual Learning Environment for Gifted and Talented Learners.

Article Excerpt

Your school has just eliminated the gifted and talented pull-out program due to budgetary constraints. Therefore, all gifted and talented students will now be taught in the general education classroom. One of your kindergarten students, Sean, is academically gifted and is advanced beyond his peers in math, social studies, and science. He is computer literate. Sean is constantly playing computer games and uses the computer for his classroom and homework… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on July 28, 2009 at 11:25am — No Comments

An Introduction to Visual Culture

Modern life takes place onscreen. Life in industrialized countries is increasingly lived under constant video surveillance from cameras in buses and shopping malls, on highways and bridges, and next to ATM cash machines. More and more people look back, using devices ranging from traditional cameras to camcorders and Webcams. At the same time, work and leisure are centred on visual media from computers to Digital Video Disks. Human experience is now more visual and visualized than ever before… Continue

Added by Timothy Gangwer on July 27, 2009 at 11:11am — No Comments

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