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Abstract

The ability to infer while reading is a critical part of meaning-making. Readers who infer go beyond the literal words on the page by adding information to the text and making implicit connections between the text and their prior knowledge (Barr, Blacowicz, Bates, Katz, & Kaufman, 2013). This skill allows them to establish causal relationships between story events, connect the events to their personal experiences, and determine relationships, motivations, and emotions within and between characters. Drawing on dual coding theory and visual literacy principles, the author demonstrates how the lines in the illustrations of The Man Between Two Towers assist the viewer in inferring the main character’s changing emotions. The author details Serafini’s (2013) exposing, exploring, and engaging protocol for introducing children to the principles of visual literacy with picture books and suggests the additional step of “connecting” the visual elements to the story meaning. Such an approach to literature can further children’s ability to make meaning of the text by teaching them to interpret the visual elements, such as line, in picture book illustrations.

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