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Visual Literacy: Rethinking the Role of Arts in Education from cyra levenson on Vimeo.

Cyra Levenson, associate curator of education at the Yale Center for British Art, produced a film on a creative education program that the Yale Center for British Art developed. With “Visual Literacy,” students use works of art as visual prompts to translate their ideas into written words.

Cyra says,

We understood from the beginning of the project that this kind of work can be hard to explain, but is quite simple if you can see and/or experience it. Also,

Children are powerful advocates for their own learning and it was very important for us to find a way for them to have  a voice.

Film as a medium worked very well. After a year of filming, we spent close to another year editing the footage, trying to understand the story we had captured, figuring out the best way to follow the contours that had emerged and to knit together the various elements. We also worked with Chrissy Gardner on an original score for the film which was another layer of experience and response to the footage. Lisa, Chrissy, and I worked closely together matching the music to the visual footage, all the while striving for the right “feel”.

There will be a feature-length article on the Visual Literacy project in the upcoming April edition of The Arts Paper. Stay tuned!

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