Graphic organizers are visual tools for thinking skills. There are many different kinds, depending on the Thinking Skill. I would like to share 3 of my favorite.
As I mentioned in Daily Assignment #17, the Descriptive Graphic Organizer is for identifying characteristics. This is a commonly used one. Another name for this graphic organizer is the Web or Wheel. When using the Descriptive Graphic Organizer, not only have the students put a characteristic on the lines coming out from the center circle, but at the end of the line draw a box and have them put evidence to support the characteristic. For example: a characteristic of the big bad wolf in The Three Little Pigs is that he is persistent. The evidence is that he continued to chase the little pigs after failing several times.
Students have a great deal of difficulty summarizing. They have a tendency to copy the book or information. The Sequential Graphic Organizer is a great visual tool for summarizing an article, book, event or steps in a directions. It is a series of connecting linear boxes. For example, K-1 students may just have 3 boxes. Second graders may have 5 boxes. Older students can make decisions on how many boxes they would need, keeping in mind that a summary is an abbreviated version of the original information.
The third graphic organizer is the Compare and Contrast, a.k.a. Venn Diagram. I prefer the Double Bubble design to the Venn Diagram. I can never fit in all the information in the center shape. The Double Bubble has 2 circles with lines coming out on one side of each circle, connecting to boxes. Between the 2 circles, in the center of the paper, there is another column of boxes, with connecting lines to both circles. The 2 things being compared would be in the circles. The things that are different would be in the outside boxes and what is similar/same would be in the center boxes. (I hope this is not as confusing as I think it is.)
I went on line to see if I could find a model of what I described. I found several that are very similar. If you search Double Bubble graphic organizers several versions come up, which may help.
On Sunday, I will describe teaching students how to use graphic organizers.
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