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Drawing as Thinking: Drawing as Language

This Drawing as Thinking series has been developed in response to an online conversation with Debi Keyte-Hartland. Each module in this five-part series invites educators to re-visit their assumptions and beliefs about children’s drawing, and to apply their insights uniquely to their work with young children.

In Drawing as Thinking Module 2, we explore drawing as a language children speak with their hands. We focus on varied elements of drawing that can propel or limit their effective and meaningful communication. We reflect on how the characteristics of drawing materials and tools can nurture children’s ability to ‘speak’. We also examine how educators can respond to children’s drawings with multimodal approaches, and with the intention and attention children need.

In Module 2 of this series, we critically consider:

  • Characteristics of drawing materials and tools that influence children’s drawings, mark-makings, and thinking.
  • Multimodal approaches to drawing that help children solve problems.
  • The power of intention and attention educators give to children’s drawings and mark-making.

Debi Keyte-Hartland is an early years expert and TedX speaker with over 25 years of experience working across the United Kingdom in schools and with educational organizations. She has worked internationally with schools in China, Singapore, Brazil, Switzerland, Norway, Senegal, and Sweden.

This module includes:

  1. Three video presentations
  2. Two reflective activities for individual and/or group refection
  3. Additional information, resources, and sources for further study
  4. Certificate of participation
  5. Lifetime access

All reflective activities and supplementary materials in this module are downloadable.

How much time does this module take?

This module offers 60-75 minutes of professional learning.

Modules may be shared with educators in a single time block or broken into smaller time chunks to guide professional learning over time. Modules may also be offered using a hybrid approach (e.g., videos and initial reflections accessed online individually at times convenient to each participant; then discussed in synchronous time as a group in-person or online.)

The amount of professional learning time will depend on variables set by individuals and/or facilitator:

  • Whether all or only some of the components of this module are accessed and discussed in synchronous time with others.
  • The amount of reflection time the facilitator allows in large or small group discussions.
  • Whether none, some, or all the additional resources in the supplementary materials are accessed.
  • The number of participants who engage in this professional learning together in synchronous time.

Terms of use: 

  • Packages are copyrighted by Inspired to Learn.
  • The purchase of each Community of Learning Module entitles the purchaser to use the material for in-person educational gatherings within their organization and reproduce worksheets for distribution
  • eCourse material may not be redistributed electronically.
  • For online learning cohorts, each participant must create an account and purchase individual access to the eCourse material.
  • Discount coupon codes and bulk purchase plans are available for groups of 5 or greater by submitting an inquiry to
  • Business-for-profit use is prohibited.

Other modules in this series:

$29 for Drawing as Thinking Module 5
$125 for Drawing as Thinking Series (Modules 1- 5)


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Ratings and Reviews

Avg. Rating
2 Ratings
What's your experience? We'd love to know!
Posted 1 year ago
100 Languages of Children-offering 'non-traditional' materials in the drawing area

I liked the stories and examples of children's art. The video was a bit 'glitchy' bu that may have been my internet.

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Posted 1 year ago
Thoughtful look at children's drawings and mark making

Lovely perspectives, and thinking from Debi and Susan.

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