NSTA Title Provides a Path to Visual Literacy in Science

Dec 06, 2010, 10:00 ET from National Science Teachers Association

ARLINGTON, Va., Dec. 6, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Fifty percent of science lessons in today's elementary textbooks use visual information to help demonstrate concepts. It is more important then ever for elementary and middle school educators to assist students in building visual literacy skills. Developing Visual Literacy in Science, K-8 is the most comprehensive resource for guiding students through interpreting photographs, charts, diagrams, figures, labels, and graphic symbols.

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The authors begin by describing visual literacy as a "must-have skill of the 21st century." They stress the significance that it will play in a student's future, especially for those who choose to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The introduction is followed by several chapters explaining the different types of visuals with strategies and techniques for using visual and spatial organizational tools to expand students' knowledge of science concepts. Also included are sample lessons that teachers will use to practice their newly acquired skills either with their class or in a professional learning community.

The final chapter of the book re-emphasizes the need for students to access, analyze, evaluate, and communicate in a variety of forms in order to become well rounded, visually literate adults in today's "information age."

"This book illustrates an important and critical issue in education: the plight of students who need additional support in learning essential concepts, whether they are students who need multiple experiences with concepts over time, ELL students, economically disadvantaged students with limited language and vocabulary, or others whose circumstances handicap their educational progress and success. This book provides not only valuable information but an invaluable social service as well."

Nancy Chesley, Elementary Science, Mathematics and Literacy Specialist, Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance

About the Author

Jo Anne Vasquez was adjunct professor of science education at Arizona State University (ASU) and, most recently, director of professional development and outreach for ASU's Center for Research on Education in Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology (CRESMET). She is also a former NSTA President.

Michael W. Comer has taught elementary and middle school science in both New York and Rhode Island. An exemplary classroom teacher, Michael was an early implementer of inquiry-based programs.

Frankie Troutman is the curriculum director for Bright Beginnings Charter School in Mesa, Arizona, and is known for her interactive, integrated, relevant workshops that provided teachers with practical science experiences for their students.

You can browse sample pages of this new book for free at the NSTA Science Store website at www.nsta.org/store.

For additional information or to purchase Developing Visual Literacy in Science K–8, and other books from NSTA Press, visit the NSTA Science Store at www.nsta.org/store. To order by phone, call 800-277-5300 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET weekdays. Outside the United States and Canada, call 301-638-0200. The 138 page book is priced at $24.95 and discount-priced for NSTA members at $19.96. (Stock # PB279X, ISBN # 978-1-935155-22-5)

The Arlington, Virginia–based National Science Teachers Association is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA's current membership includes more than 50,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education.

NSTA Press produces 15–25 new books each year. Focused on the pre-K–college market and specifically aimed at teachers of science, NSTA Press titles offer a unique blend of accurate scientific content and sound teaching strategies.

SOURCE National Science Teachers Association