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How Visual Thinking Improves Writing

How Visual Thinking Improves Writing
Younger kids typically love to draw and aren’t too worried about the outcomes of their artwork — until they get older. By the time they’ve learned to read and write, art takes a back burner to academics, primarily because of what most schools prioritize. Over time it becomes harder for kids to think in pictures the way they once did. But what if students were encouraged to think in pictures alongside words? “There’s something about writing that is a link to your brain,” said Marissa Moss, author of the popular children’s book series Amelia’s Notebook. In the books, Moss takes on the persona of a little girl expressing her ideas about the world and people around her. Taking a cue from Moss, teachers from Oak Knoll Elementary School in Menlo Park, Calif., decided to have their students keep notebooks in a similar style. “They’re not used to being given permission to write about whatever they want,” Clancy said. Now, the students write four to five times a week for 45 minutes at a time.

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