Visual Perceptual Skill Building
Janine thinks this book is great fun, but I can see it sharpening her visual perception and tracking skills. We completed most of it at the tender age of three, but have a little left to do this year. It helps lay the groundwork for the higher-level skills she'll need to learn to read, write, spell, etc. later on. The book is divided into eight sections: Mazes, Visual Discrimination, Visual Closure, Visual Form Constancy, Visual Figure Ground, Visual Memory, Visual Sequential Memory, and Visual Spatial Relationships. Each section begins with a pre-test, so you can determine if the child needs work in that area, or to gauge their existing skill level. After completing each section, a post-test allows for final assessment. There are 208 activities in all, but they are quick to complete. The Mazes section is more than just finding the right path in increasingly complex mazes - exercises also practice eye-motor coordination and tracking. In Visual Discrimination, exercises are on finding likenesses, from matching shapes to matching an object or letters to identical, but incomplete, forms (visual closure). Visual Ground goes further with the student having to match a shape or figure to an identical one that is partly obscured or sitting amidst visual distractions. This really helps increase their focus. Visual Form Constancy requires students to select objects with the same shape, ignoring other attributes (placement, rotation, shading, size, etc.). In Visual Memory, the child must look at a page, then turn the page to find the match. They cannot look back at the first page. This is an exercise which helps young children to focus and practice using their short-term memory skills. Visual Sequential Memory takes this to the next level. Students briefly study a page with several figures (including letters), then turn the page and select the correct figures and sequence from among options displayed. Finally, in the Visual Spatial Relationship section, students exercise discrimination skills by selecting the one figure that's different. As in other sections, exercises increase in difficulty throughout the section. This would be an excellent workbook to use even prior to Developing the Early Learner. Many of the same skills are practiced, but at a gentler level. The book also includes answers. Book 2 in the series builds on the skills developed in Book 1. It can be used at grade level without having used the first book or for younger children who have completed Book 1. Both books were previously black and white; Book 1 is now printed in color. We assume Book 2 will be available in color shortly as well.