For students with CVI, understanding what is seen is based on previous knowledge and the expanded understanding of salient visual features (Roman-Lantzy).
This wonderful example is from Judy Endicott who has a family member with CVI.
Judy shares this experience:
I asked Johnny (now 8), in grade 2 and 6.5 on The CVI Range, “What do you see?”
Note: (Johnny is not “into” football, and doesn’t recognize the Eagles logo, but Judy is always showing him different newspaper or magazine pictures to gain insight into his visual world, and help him use salient features to identify the image.)
Judy asks: “Johnny, what do you see?
Johnny replies: “A guy in jail.” (Johnny connects the helmet bars with the mistaken salient feature of “jail” that is known to him.)
Judy says: “Point to his head.” (Johnny does this)
Judy asks “What’s on his head?”
Johnny says: “a helmet” (Johnny understands only part of the image).
Then Judy showed him the whole picture:
Judy discussed all the salient visual information more fully.
She talked about body parts, football, uniforms, etc.
Johnny could label all of the parts correctly when Judy pointed to them, but didn’t connect them initially to help him identify a football player wearing a helmet when Judy initially asked, “What do you see?”
The type of questioning that Judy used: “What do you see?” insured that Johnny truly had access to the visual images and concepts. When it was clear that he truly didn’t have access, Judy knew this was the critical place for more instruction.