Think Graphic Organizers! By Amanda Bartruff Third Grade
Rationale Graphic organizers benefit students by making comprehensible input visible, orderly and organized. Ideas and concepts are easily manipulated and applied. Concepts and ideas are manageable because there is a concrete place to put them and apply them later.
Venn Diagram Venn Diagrams are useful when comparing and contrasting two things. Examples include comparing two stories, science concepts (animals, lifecycles, matter) To apply this graphic organizer, the differences (contrasts) go in the outer circle and the similarities (comparisons) go in the middle where the two circles intersect.
Process Grid Process Grids are excellent when summarizing concepts. Like the name states, you make a grid of information. An example would be comparing animals. Vertically would be the animals names and horizontally would be the information (physical characteristics, habitat, eating habits, etc.) Students are then able to use this information to write paragraphs about their research subject.
Pictorial Input Chart This type of graphic organizer takes a central picture or pictures and adds labels to highlight key concepts. The information is presented in short phrases or key words instead of paragraph form. The picture helps to reinforce key concepts by providing a visual representation.
Inquiry Chart Inquiry charts are a nice introduction to a new unit. You split your paper into two columns making a vertical line at top to form a “t”. On the left, you write “What I know about __” On the right, “What I want to know about __” Throughout the unit of study, you come back to the chart to answer questions, correct assumptions and add new learnings.
KWL Chart The inquiry chart and KWL chart are very similar. The difference is with the KWL chart, you have 3 columns: What I know. What I want to know. What I learned. You use students prior knowledge (Column 1) and generated questions (Column 2) to help guide your lessons. At the end of the unit, fill in the third column, What I learned.
Web Chart Web charts are useful to generate ideas especially in writing. Your central idea is in the center circle. Supporting details web out from the topic like a spider web. This graphic organizer can start out very simple or be more complex. Good chart to use to introduce graphic organizers to students.
In Review Graphic organizers benefit all students. They make concepts and information visually represented. Good for brainstorming or organizing ideas. Excellent source of information for later paragraph writing. Takes difficult concepts and allows them to be comprehensible.
Now it’s your turn! If you have not used graphic organizers before or may only use them every so often, do more! I find myself after using more of them thinking in the form of graphic organizers all the time. Beware, wall space gets depleted real quick! Go forth and EDUCATE!!!!