Today we talk about The visual thinking brain. At home and at school, a book by Natasja Esmeijer published with our publishing house Europe Books.
Europe Books had the pleasure of interviewing the author, Natasja Esmeijer, to get to know her better, where she found the inspiration to write her book The visual thinking brain. At home and at school, as well as what it means to be a “Visual Thinker” in 2022.
Below you can find our interview. Take a seat and enjoy your reading!!!
- Was there a particular moment in your life that led you to the writing of your book? What was that?
Yes, there was the moment I realized I had to do something for my daughter. My eldest daughter was a bright little girl with high intelligence but she was struggling with the school system. She was learning fast, was good at mathematics but couldn’t automate the tables of multiplication. She was understanding language easily, her reading comprehension was formidable but she couldn’t spell the words right. Her learning was one, big contradiction and her teachers hadn’t any answers, changing her from a girl who really liked to go to school into a girl that didn’t want to go to school because”she didn’t learn anything at school”. I decided to dive into the subject and realised she was just a Visual Thinker with a different way of learning, and with her there were lots of other children, learning in the same way and facing similar problems. And nobody noticed them or recognized them. I learned from all different kinds of books, courses, Visual Thinking children and adults, slowly building my knowledge about Visual Thinking. I saw the need to share my knowledge because, even with all the information available, there wasn’t any change in the school system and the knowledge of the teachers. All sources of knowledge where islands of insights. My book puts them all together and gives a clear overview of the topic.
- What messages did you want to send out with your book?
My message to the world is that all people are the same and no-one is similar. There are a lot of ways of thinking and learning and all are normal. Most school systems have one way of learning, strategically ruling out other ways of thinking and learning. We have to fit into the same system, no matter what your capabilities are. That even counts for society. Children do not know how they learn, we, adults, have the assigned job to learn them to make use of there capabilities and, once they have learned their own, natural way of learning, to learn that there are other ways. Not the other way around. By doing so we use the intrinsically motivation for learning of children. Even adults who are Visual Thinkers, who reads the book will learn about themselves. Visual Thinking is a part of your thinking process and is one of your characteristics that makes you who you are. Knowing yourself gives you self-esteem and makes live easier and happier. For adults communication with you spouse, colleagues, clients and children depends on mutual understanding. Not only for the words but also the intentions of the words. And the intentions and interpretations can be different for visual and verbal thinkers, so standing between understanding and misunderstanding.
- What does it mean to be a “Visual Thinker” in 2022?
In the past live was less hectic, there was less information available and there where less diagnoses to fall back on. Visual Thinkers are commonly highly sensitive and lightly distracted. Our recent fast and demanding life is taking its toll. The school systems are ruled by methods that have a preoccupied plan of how to learn language and mathematics, step by step and slowly but steadily increasing the difficulty of the tasks. Perfect for verbal thinkers but deadly for the creative Visual Thinking brain that needs more information to begin with. Ending up in a lot of children with behavioural problems because they cannot cope anymore, ending up at home, not able to follow school anymore, damaged by the system. There the system gives them some diagnose and they start treating from there, not realising the real problem is the school system that doesn’t fit these brains. The child is the problem, how can we solve the child. For adult Visual Thinkers the constant stream of information is deadly for there accuracy and sense of well being.
- How did it feel to see your book published?
It was really wonderful. I am so happy I can share my thoughts about Visual Thinking with the world, knowing a lot of people will benefit from my deductions. I hope it will lead to more understanding of the different ways people, children, are thinking and learning. I hope it will find its way to teachers, parents and adult visual thinkers who are struggling to cope with life. Not all visual thinkers have problems but a lot are seeking for answers and surviving instead of living. I hope it will change the way we look at educational systems and – methods making room for teachers to teach lessons in there own way and making the lessons better fitting for Visual Thinking children. I hope they learn to see the child behind the behaviour and the reason they act up. My book is already published In the Netherlands making a lot of people happy and the beginning of a change is happening. Slowly but steadily it finds is way to teachers and parents.
- Are you planning to write more books?
Yes, my second book is almost finished to be published in Dutch. It will be about the same topic but for children from the age of 11 to read for themselves. There is even more background information of why and how the brains works differently in Verbal and Visual Thinking brains. The book is divided in three parts. The first part is about the brain: the development, the differences between a verbal and a visual thinking brain and all the different brain area’s that cause the neurodiversity’s. The second part will be about those neurodiversity’s, the causes, difficulties you can encounter and all the good bits that come out of it. Neurodiversity’s like ADHD, ADD, ASD, Highly giftedness, highly sensitiveness, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, LDD and even LHBTQA+ will have its place. The third part will be about learning in your own way. How to manage school and get a diploma. It will be a complete workbook about themselves.
Europe Books thanks the author Natasja Esmeijer once again for taking the time and answering our questions. We are really pleased to have walked alongside her on the editorial path that led to the publication of her book The visual thinking brain. At home and at school. We wish her the best of luck for her future works.
To you, my dear reader, I wish this book will provide you with new knowledge and new ways of understanding and seeing the school system and beyond. But above all, that you recognize that there are many new ways of thinking and learning despite the system willing to “label” because it is easier to manage. It takes a lot of acceptance, understanding and willpower to allow everyone, especially children, to be themselves and to develop their skills in every possible way!
So, my dear reader, I just have to wish you to enjoy this very interesting reading!!!