Monday, February 6, 2017

All Eyes on Visual Literacy

Image created with the digital tools, Tagul and PicMonkey

Classrooms alive with literacy are filled with noticings, wonderings, and investigations. Teachers are guides, coaches on a journey of discovery as students become the adventurers. 

Idealistic, you may think. 
Look around. There are classrooms across the globe, seeking the path to joyful learning where agency is developed. Here in these havens of learning, small steps are taken to invite vigorous learning in daily.  

What does this look like?
Visual literacy is an entry point. Images fill the room. Words spill out and walls of wonder paint the room a brilliant shade of learning. Gallery walks spark inspiration. Students learn using different modalities, moving from paper to digital mediums and back again. Authentic learning is real-world driven and full of vibrancy, challenges, and new paths of wonder. 

What happens?
Thoughts turn into words communicated through visual and written means. Students' word power is nurtured and developed through conversation, reading, and exploration of new ideas. Vocabulary building becomes more than dictionary work. It becomes a quest of knowledge, turning over words to become the honey that sweetens the pot of knowledge. Students become the curators of their own museum of learning, not just consumers of information.

Read through these interesting facts from the Visual Teaching Alliance.
FACT: Approximately 65 percent of the population are visual learners. 
FACT: The brain processes visual information 60,000 faster than text. 
FACT: 90 percent of information that comes to the brain is visual. 
FACT: 40 percent of all nerve fibers connected to the brain are linked to the 
          retina. 
FACT: Visual aids in the classroom improve learning by up to 400 percent.
FACT: Students who are twice exceptional are often visual learners. 

“When we see, we do so many things: we experience what is happening in a direct way; we discover something we never noticed or possibly never even looked for before; we become aware through a series of visual experiences of something we eventually come to recognize and know; we watch for evolving changes through patient observation.” 
― Donis A. Dondis, A Primer of Visual Literacy: Strategies for Managing the Digital Economy

I am joining Margaret Simon at DigiLit Sunday this week where Margaret is expressing her thoughts on visual vocabulary in her classroom. 

 thank Margaret for sharing my story on how I became interested in the digital tool, Tagul, and also showing my new mantra for lifting voice through written means: Write On!