At P.S. 58, my job is to guide students to see things in a way they are not accustomed to.
This can be a simple exercise -- like pointing out a different way to interpret what they are currently drawing.
Or, it can be more complicated -- like when I have them look at a piece of crumpled paper and then I ask them to find something recognizable in it.
Simple or complicated, it's the practice of opening up your eyes, and your mind, and finding new associations and comparisons. And this practice is not limited to the classroom. We have visuals bounce around us all day so we are free to practice "seeing" whenever we want.
For example: I took the first photo because it was a fun exclamation point.
And then I turned it upside-down and it became a lower-case "i".
I found another recent photo to match into this group: a hat I was knitting at the Guggenheim Museum when I was visiting the Agnes Martin show. Behold: an eye.
Yes, it's simple. It's an "i" and an "eye". And we "see" with our "eyes". And all of a sudden, we have the beginning of a poem, or a story, a fun visual, an opening of our minds.