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Many children learn more easily and naturally by observation and image, rather than by sound and cipher. It is not at all unusual for children with high visual aptitudes to record and express their experiences and feelings in highly detailed drawings; when asked to express those same feelings in words, however, they draw a blank. These children are "visual learners."
In Envisioning Writing, Janet Olson articulates classroom strategies to help teachers understand these children better and thereby facilitate a higher level of learning for the visual learner. Detailing the strong similarities between the visual arts and the language arts, Olson describes how the writing skills of today's elementary students can be dramatically improved through a method called the "visual narrative approach" to writing. She sets guidelines to help teachers identify the children in their classrooms who will benefit most from this method of instruction.