Temple Grandin’s newest book, Visual Thinking, is a must read for anyone raising or educating children in the 21st century as we begin to see the need for every type of mind to be on board for our ride into the future.
thinking in pictures
All I wanted was to do art with kids — to teach and empower — to see their sweet faces light up with every new discovery. My young students thrived when they got the “how to” information they craved. And while teaching children how to draw, they taught me — again and again — how important art is to them. In my book, Being Visual, I talk about my 20 years experience teaching young kids how to draw by using their preferred learning style. The classes and teaching method were popular and effective, so I made a business out of it. But it’s never really been about the business.
A few years ago I met Barb, a high school special education teacher. Barb had heard about Young Rembrandts and wondered how her special needs students would respond to our step-by-step method of teaching art. After some conversation about her students’ needs and our philosophy, we agreed to teach a series of four weekly classes. The classes surpassed all of our expectations. The students were fully engaged, successfully completed every drawing and were pleased to have been participants in art class. In Chapter Five of Being Visual, I share details about the initial fears of the teaching assistants, the experiences in the classrooms, our observations and our teaching method.