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Monday, November 11, 2013

Verizon Commercial and How to "VTS this picture." It's as easy as 1,2,3!

#edcampKC was November 9th at the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art

#edcampKC group photo on the front steps of the Nelson Atkins!

Our learner-created Flickr Set of pictures was a focus of our day since...

One of our big themes for #edcampKC was visual learning. 

  • Teachers and kids in schools live in a world of largely written text. 
  • We should use art and visuals (create and view them) in learning more than we do, but how? We need some help there. Common Core Standards address this as well.
    • Lucky for us there's a method that the Nelson recommends and teaches teachers to use. It is called VTS or Visual Thinking Strategies. A plethora of resources on VTS can be found at The Nelson is well on its way to becoming the VTS hub/training center for the midwest. Watch for training on VTS and educator courses. I'm signed up for all educator art courses in the winter/spring. 
  • If you have any questions about using VTS, these are your (3--it's as easy as 1, 2, 3) people at the Nelson-Atkins! They work with teachers from the greater KC area and beyond. They are looking to SKYPE into classes. That could be into YOUR class. :)
Adrienne Lalli-Hills
Coordinator, School & Educator Services
Rosie Riordan
Head, School and Educator Services
Sarah Sims
School Partnerships Liaison

During #edcampKC, Sarah Sims and Rosie Riordan led an activity/discussion/questions on VTS.

Can all teachers feasibly work VTS into their units (all subjects)?!


    The heart of VTS'ing a picture is the 3-step method that's easy as 1,2,3...
    VTS. ALL teachers, ALL Contents.

    • It's open ended/non-judgmental, inquiry based, taps into emotions, and asks for evidence. 3 questions. Once you do it in your class a few times you can tell your kids to"VTS this picture" and they will know what to do! (...and I'll bet you they'll like it.)

    FYI: VTS is a group discussion experience. It is not designed to be individual, although it should start with time to look quietly before sharing and listening. I took part in a VTS activity with art in the Nelson in October. I learned so much and SAW new things and NOTICED new things as a result of sharing by members of the group.

    None of this--> 'That's the right answer, Johnny." Just acknowledge their statements and seek the next hand up. Let each learner share and add to the group's growing knowledge. It's a cool experience.


    Here's an example of people being asked to approach art in an open-ended way similar to VTS. Just saw it on TV after #edcampKC actually, and I thought VTS immediately. It's a nice place for someone unfamiliar with VTS to jump in and see that it is accessible and doable.
    Watch this short commercial. What parts the 3 steps above are used? Which are not?

    The 'teacher' says the following 2 starter phrases akin to the 1st one in VTS series!
    "How do you react when you see this?"
    "What do you see here"

    He does not follow up with asking for evidence or pushing on, but this is just a commercial looking to make a point. :)

    Notice how Verizon used art/visuals/map instead of TEXT and it was effective....both for content and for the commercial. Can you imagine them reading the answer and doing the commercial? LOL

    Adrienne, Rosie, and Sarah all recommended this New York Times series of VTS picture activities--and it is a weekly event! These are easy to access and understand. We can all do VTS. It's as easy as 1,2,3!

    Good luck getting started. 15 minute activity. 3 questions. Group activity/discussion. You can do it. Now just try it!

    More ideas and info on VTS in the future!

    Learner-created #edcampKC 2013 Flickr Set -- Nelson Atkins Museum of Art

    2 #edcampKC learners on the front lawn of the Nelson. (Connecting and Photographing)8:15 morning view of the Nelson-Atkins: #edcampKC Nov 9th --  67 degrees and sunny was unbelievable forecast.Sign crafted by Adrienne Lalli-Hills of the Nelson Atkins!#edcampKC t-shirt!Your #edcampKC Lead Learners yukking it up for the camera. :) (Be proud. LOL.) We had THE BEST time arranging OUR day of learning at the @nelsonatkins! THANK YOU NELSON ATKINS STAFF! You are a true gift to our #kansascity #community since you help bring kBefore the rush of arriving learners!
    Nelson-Atkins Bloch LobbyBefore the mad rush of #edcampKC learning community comes in the glass doors....things are ready! StartupWelcome! The very start of the check-in at #edcampKC at the Nelson Atkins Museum!"I went to a museum and an edcamp broke out! #edcampkc" @wmchamberlain on TwitterTwo #nkcsedu colleagues starting the day off with laughter!#edcampKC learners looking colorful and bright!
    2 friends from way back! #edcampKCAquila Court: #edcampKC TECH CAFE location complete with fountain (Yes, it will be ON!) Pull up a camp chair from the hallway!edcampkcUP the Nelson Atkins and a world of wonder! #edcampkcFree photography books the Nelson had out for #edcampKC!Chris and I
    #edcampKC organizing team! Laura and KyleNew Friends at #edcampKC!Don't forget to fill out your official Raffle Ticket!!Filling out his official #edcampKC raffle ticket!Amazing educators and colleagues! (one of them is a former student and pre-service teacher at KSU!) #nkcseduReady for a great day of choice-based learning--#edcamp Style!

    My dream of holding #edcampKC at the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, a Kansas City cultural icon, came to fruition on Saturday, November 9th! A heARTy thank you to Adrienne Lalli-Hills who answered a million questions/emails from me and who truly helped make this dream happen! If not for her efforts, kindness, and work, we couldn't have experienced edcamp learning at the Nelson.

    Kyle Pace and I had a grand day in the 4th #edcampKC and 1st one at the Nelson-Atkins.

    The venue itself took our day and our learning to a new level. The weather was 67 degrees F and sunny. Group picture on the front steps went off with lots of laughs and a funny passerby-camera-dude. A mural/art room complete with Kyle Pace's mom's cookies. The Educator Resource Center where the staff signed teachers up to be on committees with them to help get art into all contents via Skype and more! A packed-house raffle at 3:30 thanks to Kansas City coming through with many awesome KC gifts acquired through JUST CALLING AND ASKING! Raffle was fun.

    Our #EdcampKC themes at the Nelson were Visual learning (VTS-visual thinking strategies), Conversation, Learning out Loud, and Reaching out to and engaging the Community.

    Kyle is sending out a feedback form to all attendees today along with an attendee badge for blogs or websites. I've already talked with the amazing staff at the Nelson today about #edcampKC 2014. Adrienne has set a tentative first planning date in February.

    Our issue of the day was, you guessed it, wifi. We crashed it and people could not access from computers/tablets unless they had hotspots. Once people jumped off, you could get on but it was a frustration we'd hoped would not present itself. It pushed the focus to conversation and people adjusted. We want to erase that problem next year. The Nelson education staff told me today they want to help solve that issue. :)

    More blogposts to come on #edcampKC takeaways and on VTS.

    Thanks to everyone at #edcampKC. Every person present was an important part of the cumulative experience, the conversations, the learning, and the FUN.

    Enjoy the Flickr picture set as your VISUAL story of our day. The set is still growing as #edcampKC'ers send their pictures to my Flickr email address.