Learning Visually

The Visual Learner and the Preschool Environment

Children want to determine how the space works and what activities can happen in this place. Today's young children are spending a large number of hours in a "new" environment—child care. Some children who begin attending child care in infancy may spend as much as 12,000 hours in this setting. This massive number of hours in one environment demands that the space be carefully designed to create the "best" place possible for young children. In the past, many early childhood classrooms were so filled with commercial decorations, materials and, "stuff" that young children were visually overwhelmed. Today, we are working to have less clutter and a more organized display of materials and work, so young children can visually attend to and enjoy the important features of the environment. The environment in which young children live tells them how to act and respond (Isbell, ND).

For the Visual Learner in the Preschool they are looking for:

  • Organisation and Structure
  • Predictability
  • Flexibility
  • Conveys Success


Viewing the Learning Environments through the eyes of a Visual Learner: Audit tool (Bortoli, 2018)

The next time you plan your learning spaces, conduct an audit of the physical environment using the guidelines below:

  • A clearly organised classroom
  • A structured classroom
  • Availability of a visual schedule
  • Availability of a mini schedule
  • Expectations are visually reinforced during:
    • Whole group activity
    • Small group activity
    • Individual activity
  • Specific classroom routines are supported with visuals
  • Opportunities for choice making are supported with visuals
  • Transitions are clearly identified (visual and/or auditory)
  • Changes in the program are clearly conveyed to the child
  • Flexible learning and social spaces
  • Learning and social spaces act as a cognitive cue to the child which visually tells them:
    • What do I have to do?
    • How much do I have to do?
    • When do I know I am finished?
    • What’s next?