Visual Literacy K-12

Ninety percent of the information we take in every day is visual. Your students are constantly viewing illustrations, pictures, art, diagrams, and text. Visual literacy will help them decode, understand, and communicate better with the world around them.
So, what do you look for when choosing books for your students to teach them about visual literacy?  

Critical aspects of teaching this skill include complexity of ideas, rich illustrations, themes, layers of meaning, and a variety of text type. These elements require skills to negotiate the complex interplay between visual clues within images and text, as well as the visual expression of the written word.

Illustrated fiction books prompt readers to explore allusions, cryptic symbols, and possibly hidden text in the artwork. Non-fiction books featuring bright photos and creative text displays such as boxes, sidebars, and magazine-style formatting are interesting, and give the reader several avenues with which to explore and connect. Decoding a graph, picture, or illustration can give the reader a sense of story and chronology-- a seed of comprehension that can flower into understanding.

Teaching visual literacy trains the mind's eye for visual capacity in text. Engaging text can evoke highly visual and powerful thoughts, which in turn create visual imagery in the mind, producing critical thinking and understanding of context.
Choose a grade level below for books that meet the requirements to teach and enhance classroom visual literacy skills. 


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