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ERIC Number: EJ759039
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Apr
Pages: 7
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 20
ISSN: ISSN-0034-0561
"Reading" the Painting: Exploring Visual Literacy in the Primary Grades
Williams, T. Lee
Reading Teacher, v60 n7 p636-642 Apr 2007
Traditional literacy practices and educational policymakers define reading as a process of vocabulary recognition and print-based decoding. This perspective is especially prevalent in the primary-grade literacy classroom. Yet, a growing movement sees literacy encompassing not only printed text, but a wide range of cultural, technological, and visual experiences. In this article, a teacher discusses her efforts to incorporate this broadened definition of reading in a second-grade classroom. In an innovative activity, students created personal, written interpretations of a wide range of artwork from the National Gallery in London, England. Without historical and contextual clues about the artists or paintings, students used critical thinking skills to craft interesting and unique stories about the artwork. This project illustrates the potential of incorporating visual literacy into a primary-grade classroom and how responsive even young children can be to an expanded view of literacy. The author details the project's background, implementation steps, and outcomes. (Contains 2 tables.)
International Reading Association. 800 Barksdale Road, P.O. Box 8139, Newark, DE 19714-8139. Tel: 800-336-7323; Fax: 302-731-1057; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 2
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England); United Kingdom (London); United Kingdom (Reading)