Monday #25: Lookie Here

A few weeks ago, a friend texted me this picture and asked me to guess what it was. I love optical illusions and games like this so I took a few guess-what-this-is shots of my morning today.

I was pretty close to being right about the picture my friend sent me but it got me thinking about my life as, primarily, a visual person and ways that what we see affects how we learn. I have always been better at understanding things I can see in colors and shapes and I pride myself on being able to visualize things– a painting, an object that needs to be assembled or fixed and things like home renovations and room arrangements– I can see possible solutions in my imagination. I don’t, however, do well with lists of instructions or recipes and prefer to watch someone do something and then attempt to do it from what I’ve seen and heard.

Social scientists have broken down the types of learners into three, main categories: visual, auditory and kinesthetic. Visual learners remember faces but forget names, dream vividly and often in color, have good spatial sense and, as a result, a good sense of direction. Auditory learners remember names well, enjoy sounds and music and typically sing or play an instrument, use rhyme and sound in learning and visualize better with background sounds. Kinesthetic learners use their bodies and sense of touch to gather information about the world around them, appreciate textures, use large body and hand gestures to communicate and think of issues, ideas and problems while exercising.

Further categorizations of learning styles are verbal, logical, social and solitary and most people are a combination of all these categories with one stronger tendency leading the way. Classrooms, unfortunately, still tend to favor auditory learners and scorn kinesthetic learners who simply cannot sit still. Learning styles have huge implications on how students learn, particularly if the teacher’s own learning style is in opposition.

So, what is the picture my friend sent me? It’s the oil circles that formed in a pan of water after it was used to fry breakfast sausage. Think it looks like modern art? Hmmm. Not sure but it makes for a good visual puzzle. My morning close-ups were some ripening bananas, my range top, backsplash tile, a floating tea bag, a boiling pot of chili for tonight’s dinner and the salt residue on my car. Take out your camera phone the next time you see something that, when looked at up close, appears gloriously abstract and see if anyone can guess what it is. At the very least, they will turn on a part of their brains trying to figure it out. Have a great week, friends!

TRY THIS WEEK: Keep your eyes open for beautiful and unexpected patterns in your world.

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About Dar Hosta James

I am an artist living in New Jersey. I write and illustrate children's books, paint, draw, blog, coach, teach and speak about creativity.
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