Can you remember your experiences as a young learner? If anything stands out, it might be your favorite picture books.
You were likely a recipient of the gift of visual learning. You may even now have a tendency to prefer that style of learning.
Today, teachers still use picture books as powerful learning tools. They also draw from a nearly endless array of visual aids. Read on and explore how visual storytelling helps parents and teachers of younger children improve the learning experience.
Visual Storytelling 101
You may have never heard the term used formally, but you enjoy the benefits of visual storytelling every day.
Think about the Instagram posts, the YouTube videos, and even the political cartoons you see in your online newspaper. The point of each image is to grab your attention and inspire action.
Using just one example—a YouTube video—you click on a video about the ins and outs of tent camping. You’ve never done it before, and you want to learn all about it before buying a tent.
Whether the YouTube creator used photographs, illustrations, graphs, symbols, or other visual stimuli, they helped you make sense of complex information using the following skills:
Without realizing it, you used visual learning skills to help you learn about camping. The YouTube creator used storytelling to show you what camping is all about.
Younger students develop those same skills when parents and teachers use visual storytelling techniques to help them learn about the outdoors.
How Visual Learning Helps Younger Children
In general, storytelling helps young learners in several ways. It’s a vital part of brain development and helps in the development of:
Using visual learning techniques, teachers help early learners talk about feelings, share their knowledge, and develop creativity.
When you consider that 65% of the population today are visual learners, it makes sense to implement visual storytelling early in the learning experience.
Practical Ways to Use Visual Learning
We’ve shared some of the benefits of visual storytelling, but how do you put it to use when working with younger students? This method of learning looks quite different in an early childhood environment than it would in a middle school classroom.
While middle school students might work together to collect information (surveys and interviews) and put it together in a visual presentation (slides or handouts), younger students don’t yet have those skills.
Here are a few practical projects designed for young learners:
- Finger puppets
- Paper dolls
- Story stones
These are all hands-on projects children can use to tell a story.
Why not offer children a chalkboard? Younger students love using chalk to write stories and draw pictures. An art easel is another option that allows children to socialize and work with one another while drawing, painting and writing.
Need More Ideas for Improving Learning?
While visual storytelling is one way parents and teachers can help younger children learn, play is also vital to improving learning.
The experts at Adventurous Child are happy to help you find ways to keep play safe and engaging. We’d love to talk with you to answer any questions about our products or to place an order.