Sunday, January 27, 2013

Graphic Organizers, Just a Good Idea

Disclaimer:  These ideas do not take the place of therapeutic or educational services in any manner. These are only my opinions and serve as a resource to parents, teachers or clinicians looking for activities that may support their student or child's treatment. This is my personal blog and this blog or my opinions set in my personal blog do not in any way represent my employer, university or colleges I have attended.  Thank you.
Hi Again,

  I thought that I would discuss the topic of using graphic organizers today.  Graphic Organizers supports  students' comprehension of concepts and vocabulary skills.   It is an incredibly useful tool for increasing knowledge base.  Children as well as adults may experience 'leaps with learning' by using this effective, evidence based learning device. 

What is a Graphic Organizer?

Firstly, graphic organizers are visual.  If you think about how you learn, this tool can help you to map out your learning process.  When you are teaching students, graphic organizers helps you to look at the relationships between facts, knowledge and concepts.  It is mostly used with reading instruction, but can be very handy with other core subjects and very effective with teaching vocabulary. There are various types of graphic organizers, and if you like to get creative-you can make your own based on your students' abilities.

How I use Graphic Organizers

Mostly, I use this resource to compare-contrast objects and concepts, and to introduce new vocabulary. I also use it to help a learner with comprehension of a reading passage and to identify cause/effect relationships.  Of course, sometimes I have to modify this material; so what I have done is to present it with less steps, make it colorful or personalize it.  For example, I took pictures of two students and placed their pictures on a Venn Diagram.  A Venn Diagram is used to show similarities and differences between characters or concepts in a story.  To reinforce their learning, I used their picture and made it a little more concrete.  A Venn Diagram is one of many types of graphic/visual organizers or concept maps, as it is also referred to.  Below is an image of a Venn Diagram and other forms of graphic/visual organizers

Venn Diagram:  Differences on each side of a circle, and similarities in the middle

Differences                                      Differences


Here is another type of graphic organizer or concept map as it is also referred to, I created this one:

Graphic Organizer also increase  understanding and use of new vocabulary, take a look at this one:

Is this tool effective?

There have been ranges of studies that have supported the use of graphic organizers in the classroom.  Research suggests that the most gains are made in the area of vocabulary acquisition/ knowledge.

To sum it all up, I use and create these as part of my plan to increase learning outcomes for my students.  My hope is that you can do your own investigating, use this helpful learning tool and begin to reflect on individualizing it based on each of your student's needs.

For my parents that read this blog, use this website to help your child learn!

Teachers and SLP's this website can be very helpful as you plan for your students and clients.

I hope this entry was useful for you all!

Blessings and have fun learning,


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