Implementation of “Optical Illusions: Is it or is not?” (SOI-MT-376)

Author: Valerie Agius, Primary Teacher

School/Organization: St Benedict College, Ħal Għaxaq Primary, Malta

I chose this learning scenario as it is practical and interesting for younger children too. I was planning to do the topic angles and thought about combining mathematics and art. It is very visual and children could observe through these visual illusions different angles.

Stages of implementation

I used the Europeana platform to plan and use resources shared through the platform. I decided to introduce the lesson by showing visual images, asking them to explore from a mathematical side long or short lines and if they can notice any angles. Children share their knowledge about what they know about optical illusions and was shared with them a clear meaning of optical illusions through a video. This took a scientific side as well.

This was followed by exploring the artistic work of Victor Vasarely, discussing their colours, lines and angles. Children measured the angles from the interactive board and could recognize different types of angles. Finally, children made their own designs of optical illusion, using different angles, colours and straight lines.


I adapted the learning scenario to an easier level since children were younger, showing them visuals through a PowerPoint presentation, animations by showing them a video and a hands on experience to measure the angles and classify them.

I connected the learning scenario to another mathematical side which is the topic ‘Angles’. 

Learning Outcomes and Feedback

These are the learning outcomes which were shared with the students and achieved by the end of the lesson:

1.Explore different pictures with optical illusions.
2. Follow a video, using angles to form optical illusion
3. Find right angles in pictures showing optical illusions by Victor Vasarely’s art.
4. Make your own optical illusion using different angles and straight lines.

The feedback I got from the children was positive. Children were motivated and interested in the Maths topic, showed willingness to learn angles through the work of arts. They also showed interest to create their own designs using the mathematical concept discussed in the lesson.

Through this feedback I realised that children are more motivated to learn through real life things and visuals. They showed willingness to measure the angles through colourful visuals. 

I would suggest such implementation of the learning scenario as many as it combines the learning of mathematics, art and science. 

What did I learn?

I realized that combining core subjects along with arts and science digital heritage made my lesson more interesting and appealing for young students. I would suggest other educators to teach with Europeana resources. It requires research and planning but learning outcomes are easier to be achieved.

Did you find this story of implementation interesting? Why don’t you read about the related learning scenario? Optical Illusions: Is it or is not? created by Natalija Budinski

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CC BY 4.0: the featured image used to illustrate this article has been found on Europeana and has been provided by the Universitaire Bibliotheken Leiden.

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