An Overview of Thinking Maps By Melissa Winfield
What are Thinking Maps? Thinking maps were developed in 1988 by Dr. David Hyerle. Thinking maps are comprised of 8 maps that are each based on a cognitive skill. Thinking Maps support the brain’s natural tendency to detect patterns. These Maps often help promote reading comprehension, the writing process, problems solving and thinking skills. Thinking maps can be utilized individually or in various combinations to form a common visual language for students and teachers at all grade levels, in all subject areas.
Benefits of Thinking Maps• stimulates the brains natural tendency to detect patterns• establishes a common visual language that crosses all content areas• enables students to hook new information to their individual experiences and understandings• requires interaction and movement, accessing students semantic and episodic memories to strengthen connections• supports students of all learning styles and language proficiencies as they construct meaning• provides informal assessment data so teachers can plan for differentiated instruction to reach common goals• improves upon the practice of utilizing graphic organizers, placing the emphasis on thinking• supports students in critical thinking, a life-long skill!