Visual Literacy in Scienceby: Erin McTigue and Amanda Croix

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While diagrams make the text more visually appealing and provide an image of the text, they also do much more. Subsequently, the authors designed a series of lessons for students to discover the many purposes of graphics in science. A particular utility of these interdisciplinary lessons is that they are used with any science text featuring visual images.

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  • on Fri Dec 19, 2014 12:25 PM

Humans use their eyes above their other senses about 80 percent of the time. Sight helps us gather information quickly so this article is a no-brainer. The techniques and tools listed in this article will make any student excel in understanding the graphics in their textbooks and rely less on the words on the page. Having used similar activities in my classroom for years, my students improved their observational skills and developed a deeper ability to critically interpret information presented to them.

Adah  (San Antonio, TX)
Adah (San Antonio, TX)

  • on Thu Apr 21, 2011 10:51 AM

The authors of this article provided lessons on interpreting graphically represented important science concepts as a way to help students understand the purposes and functions of visual information in science. They used authentic class materials to integrate the activities with what students were currently studying in a fifth grade classroom. By showing students how to use the visual information provided in texts, students started paying more attention to how the visual images worked to improve their understandings of each concept. The authors took this one step farther and used a visual manner to assess their students’ facility with visual communication. The sample lessons covered diagrams of osmosis in cells, volcano images in three formats, and a pictorial diagram showing blood flow through the heart. This provided several types of visual representations to compare and contrast and 4 kinds of organizational diagrams were utilized: Venn diagrams, tree diagrams, flow charts, and t

Carolyn Mohr  (Buffalo Grove, IL)
Carolyn Mohr (Buffalo Grove, IL)

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