Science Shorts: Encouraging Visual Literacy

by: Tracy L. Coskie and Kimberly J. Davis

When someone asks you about the solar system or the water cycle, what pops into your mind? Chances are it’s a diagram. Powerful images like these help us understand, communicate, and remember important concepts in science. Learning how to read them is a critical part of scientific literacy. However, in order for children to become critical readers of pictures and diagrams, they need lots of opportunities to interact with and produce them. The following activity is designed to help students begin to interpret and question visual models and can be easily adapted for use in a variety of units.


Type Journal ArticlePub Date 11/1/2008Stock # sc08_046_03_56Volume 046Issue 03

NSTA Press produces classroom-ready activities, hands-on approaches to inquiry, relevant professional development, the latest scientific education news and research, assessment and standards-based instruction.

Learn More