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Supporting Struggling Readers with Visual Art

Session 2: Grades K–6

How do you teach upper-level comprehension skills in grades 3–6 when some students still struggle with basic reading?

This workshop will demonstrate innovative approaches to teaching reading comprehension using visual art. Students can learn how to: inference, determine main ideas and details, compare and contrast, explore culture, and summarize, all using art as their “text”.

During this class, participants will first view example mini-lessons, then, using images and lesson plans (provided free for all registered attendees), they will partner up to generate mini-lesson ideas that apply directly to their own classrooms. The group will share ideas, and leave with a database of resources to get started.

* Computers or tablets are required for this session.


Tara Carpenter

Tara Carpenter has taught students at all levels, from pre-k to continuing education. She is a mixed-media artist who has had her work exhibited locally and nationally. She currently teaches in the Art Education area at Brigham Young University. Tara has developed new programming at BYU called "Jumpst(ART)," introducing BYU students to new art techniques and having them teach those techniques to elementary students in an after-school art class.


Jayme Gandara

Jayme Gandara is a graduate of Brigham Young University and has taught fourth and fifth grades in the Provo School District. She has a strong belief in integrating the arts into her daily classroom settings. She uses process dramas to teach history, incorporates music into math lessons and teaches visual art techniques using printmaking, scientific drawings, sketching, cartooning, watercolors and oil pastels. Her students study the works of Van Gogh, Joan Miro and others. She is also a recipient of her school's Golden Apple Award.