Tips to choose the right visual aids for your in-class teaching.

As an artist, a teacher is who draws students’ learning process from visual aids. Understanding the power of visual aids in the classroom does a great help for teachers to choose the right one. However, choosing is always a hard task. Hence, this article will guide you to pick the visual aid that perfectly fit with your in-class teaching.

Top visuals aids should be used for primary students in the classroom

In the world of primary students, there are various visual aids to consider how we, as teachers, can improve and enhance how our children learn. Nevertheless, more isn’t always the merrier in case you are going to use visual aids in your class. According to the successful innovative teachers, primary students have a unique but sensitive sense about visuals. And it has a considerable impact on the way they learn through visual aids.

Here we list for you the 7 most common visual aids that you should choose for your primary students. To make this list, we have collected and evaluated according to 3 criteria:

  • Easy to use
  • Be attracted to children
  • Effectively help you deliver lessons

1. Objects:

Using an object is a great choice to show and demonstrate the lessons. How? For example, you can easily see your children love educational TV shows or online videos in which the instructor becomes a mascot and acts like a friend who knows ever-good-thing in the world. They also pretty enjoy a story that is told in a dialog of puppets.

Sesame Street is one of the most famous Youtube channels which uses puppets to teach children through songs or stories.

So the question is, why don’t you act like that in your class? You can use puppets or toys to apply storytelling in teaching. Or even you can bring the real artifacts or products to class so your students can touch and learn better. In a nutshell, using objects is a kind of making the lesson more real to engage students.

2. Posters:

When talking about educational posters, people usually think to class options such as ABCs/ numbers, animals, parts of the body and so on. Educational posters are amazing to inspire and remind the students. In other word, posters are the teaching aids that can breathe life into the classroom.

One example of educational posters is to teach children colors and shapes. (Source: School Tutoring)

About posters’ advantages, firstly, hanging posters up on the classroom walls will color the learning environments. For instance, teachers can decorate the class with posters including colorful charts, graphs, tables to make lists or infographics. Secondly, posters also act as helpful resources for students. Many teachers use posters as a medium to transmit the information as rules of class, the expectation for students, study tips.

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3. Flash Card:

This flashcard was designed by our illustrators when we did animated video series for Bar Model company.

Flash Card is the favorite choice in teaching language for primary students. From class duties as games to competition, there are lots of things that students prefer to learn with flashcards.  

Moreover, flashcard is an excellent tool to support learning in groups. As students, children enjoy collecting, sharing or exchanging flashcard that they have. Therefore, teachers can use flashcard as a gift to motivate and achieve students to join the lessons.

4. Illustrations and Photos:

This image is one of our scenes in the storyboard that explain how elephants drink water in the wildlife.

Since most people are visual learners, illustrations and photos are ideal when teachers are looking for the right visual aid. There are many benefits of illustrations and photos, so we brief them into 3 things: demonstrate, simplify and visualize ideas. Especially for teaching kids, visualization can help teachers avoid length and complicated explanations.

Another cool thing about illustrations and photos is that there are so many approaches you can take to create one. A real photo is great, so you can quickly snap it. Or you can paint a picture if you have artistic talent. And a design taken by illustrators is pretty useful when objects don’t have the real version.

5. Videos:

It isn’t overstated that videos are an attention grabber and engagement promoter.  It’s because videos not only make the lessons easy to understand but they also delivery interesting vibes into the class.

The two typical types of videos for in-class teaching nowadays are educational animation and live-action videos. Each type of video has its own pros and cons so it’s hard to tell which one is better. However, if you ask us for a trend of educational videos, we could recommend you animations.

This video is one typical example of educational animation for primary students. As you can see, the way our illustrators use Avengers characters has helped children approach Math problems as engaging animated stories. 

6. Slide Presentations:

Presentations aren’t a new visual aid at school, but recently, they are less priority to use. Why? Because they are lack fun. The traditional presentations may be useful for adult business students, however, kids need more than that.

In general, kids love powerpoints that have vibrant colors with attractive fonts and creative layout. (Source: Venngage)

So what we mention here are creative presentations. First, a creative one will shorten teaching time as usual. Second, presenting information in a creative and visually-simulating way will help students engage in the topic. Third, eye-catching slides can go in a long way to keep your students from snoring in the middle of class.

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One more thing, if you are considering to create a creative presentation, would be the ideal place for you to do it by yourself! 

7. Handouts:

A simple handout can be a great tool to have in a classroom. Handouts seem like a small poster that display all types of information. Teachers can have charts, graphs, pictures, illustrations or whatever in a handout as long as it supports teaching purpose.

An example of handouts as a worksheet for students to take note during a lesson about emotion. (Source: Mom Junction)

An inclusive advantage of handouts is that students can keep it individually and take note during the lessons. Hence, it can lead to higher retention compared to other visual aids. When students aren’t at school, they still remember what has practiced in class thanks to looking at handouts.

The rules for choosing

Every selection needs a rule. And choosing visual aids isn’t an exception. In this situation, we believe that teachers should consider the purpose of using visual aids, or we can call teaching objectives. Because this section will review why visual aids are essential for your teaching, you need to check whether they fit your initial purpose of choosing among various different options.

Now we will show you how visual aids are useful for each teaching objective. Hence if you want to:

  • Rapidly transfer the knowledge, you should try animations or slide presentations

It’s because visualizations in an animated video or presentation can communicate complex ideas more quickly than the spoken word.

  • Simplify the content, use objects, flashcard or  illustrations & photos

Visualization plays a huge role in simplifying abstract subjects or process in sequence. As we already discussed in part 2-3a, there are always have content that hard to obverse or imagine in teaching. So, it’s time to use visualizations instead of objects.

  • Better organize the class, choose posters, flash cards or handouts

Organizing a class depends on how children want to learn, work in groups or individually. Flashcards will encourage students to learn together in a team. Meanwhile, handouts are preferred for kids to learn alone.

  • Increase children’s retention, handouts would be the best choice

Since children can keep handouts and even bring it to home, it can customize to each student. Adding visuals as a positive impression to highlight what you want students to retain.

  • Get everything in once, try animations

Animations are multi-functional visual aids that can explain the knowledge in a fantastic way, set a tone for the lesson, control the distraction and manage teaching time. They also help students recall the knowledge faster than others.    

Our guidance in choosing the right visual aids

The table below is our guideline for teachers to select visual aids from 3 inputs: learning style, teaching style, and subject. We also apply the rules of choosing that based on teaching objectives. So, don’t waste your time, check it out!

Visual AidLearning styleTeaching styleSubjects
ObjectsPhysical & verbal learnersLecture, Activities & Group styleHistory, Music, Art
PostersVisual & logical learnersLecture & Group styleScience, Language, Math
Flash CardVisual, Physical & Verbal learnersGroup & Activity styleForeign Language, Math
Illustrations and PhotosVisual & Social learnersAll style, really need for lecture styleAll kind of subjects, from Math to Literature
VideosVisual & Aural learnersAll style, especially coach styleMost of the subjectsBest use in science, math, biology, art
Slide PresentationsVisual, verbal & logical learnersActivity & coach styleAll subjects
HandoutsVisual & Solitary learnersBlended styleGeography, Science


That’s how to choose the right visual aids for your in-class teaching! You see, it isn’t difficult at all if you have a guide to follow. However, you always need to be thoughtful and wise when picking anything for your student. Since one theory can be right with someone and not suitable for another. And don’t forget to add your personality in teaching, even with visual aids. Because proper visual aids can enhance visual communication and the effectiveness of your in-class teaching.

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