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Table of Contents
Optical illusions, more appropriately known as visual illusions, involves visual deception. Due to the arrangement of images, the effect of colors, the impact of light source or other variables, a wide range of misleading visual effects can be seen.
See the fact file below for more information on the optical illusions or alternatively, you can download our 24-page Optical illusions worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Optical illusions date all the way back to ancient Greece. The Greeks used optical illusions in their architecture and art.
- Its earliest applications was found in Greek rooftops. On temples, roofs were built with a slant, and observers perceived that the rooftops were curved.
- One of the oldest known illusions related to touch was described by Aristotle more than 2,000 years ago. If you cross two adjacent fingers and then touch an object such as a pen, with both crossed finger tips at the same time it will feel as though you are touching two pens, not one.
- In 5 B.C., a Greek philosopher named Epicharmus explained the concept of optical illusions. According to him, our brains weren’t at fault, as they could perceive an image clearly. Instead, our senses betray us when viewing optical illusions. “The mind sees and the mind hears,” he said. “The rest is blind and deaf.”
- However, Greek philosopher Protagoras refuted the theory. He concluded that optical illusions were dependant on the environment in which they were viewed rather than our physical senses.
- Plato then added that our minds and our eyes work together to establish the world, including optical illusions, which is a widely accepted belief today.
- The fascination continued thousands of years later, as 19th century researchers Johannes Mueller and J.J. Oppel expanded their research on optical illusion.
- With the help of Franz Carl Muller-Lyer, a German sociologist, they produced the illustrated Muller-Lyer illusion, helping the public process and understand optical illusions.
- Another German physicist by the name of Hermann von Helmholtz also concluded a theory similar to Protagoras. He introduced the concept of a cognitive illusion.
- The famous cartoon made by W.E. Hill in 1915 is a famous example of an optical illusion. In this image, an old and young woman were merged together. It is our perception that leads to what we see in the picture. Watching the sketch reveals that different images are skilfully merged together.
- By the 1960s, a growing interest among abstract painters in ‘Op Art’ produced various impressions of hidden images, vibrations, flashing, and other patterns. Artists like Bridget Riley and Vasarely popularized this style of painting.
HUMANS AND OPTICAL ILLUSIONS
- An optical illusion is a way of tricking the brain into seeing something that may not be there.
- The human brain puts images together because it has learned to expect certain things. Sometimes, the data gets confused.
- Many people enjoy looking at illusions. They seem to love being fooled in this way. Magicians use illusions all the time. In fact, magicians are sometimes referred to as illusionists.
- Some experiments that are being done show that some mammals and birds are fooled by illusions in much the same way as people are.
- Another illusion is the silverware and tablecloth at dinner. When you touch both, the silverware appears to be colder than the cloth.
- The fact is, however, they are both at room temperature. This is because metal conducts heat away from your finger more rapidly than cloth does.
- Some illusions can actually be dangerous. Our sense of equilibrium or balance is located in the inner ear, but it works closely with our visual world.
- When the pilot of an aircraft is flying at night or in a cloud and has no visual reference points, it is possible for the pilot to become disoriented. He or she cannot tell whether the plane is gaining or losing altitude or turning left or right.
- This is called vertigo. It is an illusion, and pilots are trained to never rely on their sense of position but to respond entirely to the plane’s instruments.
- When we go to the movies, we are actually experiencing an illusion. Nothing is really moving as we experience the film except a series of still photographs on a reel of film. Each is exposed for only a very short time, and our eyes and brain do not see the separate still shots. Our brains see the figures on the screen moving.
- Another illusion we experience at the movies involves the sound. When we look at the characters on the screen, it appears the sound is actually coming out of their mouths. The reality is that the sound is coming out of speakers throughout the auditorium we are sitting in.
- A computer monitor is also an optical illusion. The screen is made up of tiny red, green, and blue dots. The illusion is that you see more than just red, green, and blue dots. You see thousands of different colors. Our brains put the red, green, and blue dots together to make the colors.
Optical illusions Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the optical illusions across 24 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Optical illusions worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the optical illusions, more appropriately known as visual illusions, which involves visual deception. Due to the arrangement of images, the effect of colors, the impact of light source or other variables, a wide range of misleading visual effects can be seen.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Optical Illusions Facts
- The Classics
- Find the Ambiguity
- What Do You See?
- What Is Different?
- Find Me!
- Persistence of Vision
- An Afterimage
- Line Illusions
- Word Illusions
- Illusions Around Us
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Link will appear as Optical illusions Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, July 30, 2020
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.