Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Painting A Picture

Teaching a visual-spatial learner keeps me on my toes in making learning fun and creative.  We're working on reading comprehension now.  Teaching a child to read is the first step. The next steps to making a good reader are teaching the child to understand what they've read and to predict what may happen next in the story.   As I read to my daughter, we often stop, close our eyes, and picture what we just read. I will help her paint a mental picture of the scenario we just read.  I have her do worksheets to help her practice her handwriting and to help her put her thoughts or 'pictures' into words.  After reading a paragraph for which she has to answer questions on a worksheet, I ask her the questions orally first.  If necessary, I will also give her visual clues.  Visualizing the story has had a dramatic improvement in her reading comprehension.

It can be a pivotal point for a child when they can paint a picture of what they are studying, whether it's a mental picture or a picture on paper, and whether it's for reading comprehension, mathematics, or science.  The pivotal point for my daughter came when she started using an interactive animated online learning program.  Time4Learning provided her with pictures she needed to understand or make that connection.  She could now remember what she had seen on the computer screen.  She was now not only hearing it, but seeing it pictured as well. It was different than reading it herself in a textbook or just hearing me teach it to her.  She was getting that third element that she so needed. She was now visualizing it. She could now retain and bring back to memory the pictures she had seen. Learning started to become interesting and fun for her. We can take advantage of the visual elements that a computer can provide in teaching any subject or concept.  The computer is an essential tool for my visual-spatial learner.  Online interactive games, lapbooking, drawing pictures, manipulatives, educational songs, picture cards or flashcards are also creative tools we can use.

1 comment:

Kat said...

Loved reading this! My boys are visual learners as well. It can be tough for them to work on something when they are struggling to picture it in their heads, but technology and the internet have really helped with that, lol. If we're lucky, we can usually find videos to help with certain subjects/concepts. At the very least, we can almost always find photos...

Thanks for sharing! :)