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Tool for Reading Comprehension: Graphic Organizers OMHS – March 3, 2008.

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1 Tool for Reading Comprehension: Graphic Organizers OMHS – March 3, 2008

2 Graphic Responses Drawing and writing are branches of the same cognitive tree. Graphic mode better fits some students learning style. All learners have varying degrees of visual intelligence (Gardner, 1999).

3 The Importance of Visuals Authors expect readers to visualize concrete and abstract ideas. Teachers must help students cultivate visual abilities as they learn. Visuals summarize text information by showing, not telling. Visuals are helpful in all three stages of reading: before, during, and after.

4 Types of Visuals Pictures Videos Maps Graphic organizers such as diagrams, charts and tables

5 Differences Pictures, videos, and maps show physical descriptions of a texts information and images. Graphic Organizers are drawings that use geometric shapes or tables to show connections between pieces of information (Hyerle, 1996).

6 Benefits of Graphic Organizers Support all learners, but especially those with special needs Provide structure and guidance as readers move toward greater independence Offer a visual means of explaining and organizing information and ideas Ask students to evaluate and actively manipulate information, thus seeing connections and relationships between ideas

7 Continued Teach students to think categorically Help to prepare for and facilitate writing, thinking, and discussing Help students remember and make greater cognitive associations between information and ideas Force students to evaluate information in order to determine what is important

8 Continued Prepare students for the world of work, where such tools are used with increasing frequency Improve readers understanding of the text Help to develop students knowledge of textual structures and their general textual intelligence

9 When To Use GOs Classify ideas, words, and characters prior to writing about or discussing a text Organize a sequence in a process they are reading about Take parallel notes – comparing text with experiment or lecture Determine what is important in a text Understand the organizational pattern of the information or story

10 Design Their Own Students who learn to make their own graphic organizers are far better at remembering and understanding the information in texts than those students who just fill out a GO made up by the teacher (Peregoy & Boyle, 2000). It reinforces their understanding of the material by requiring them to reconstruct the information in their own words and to create connections.

11 Assessing with Graphic Organizers Can give you the chance to assess informally the ways in which students are understanding text information Simple rubrics or checklists that go with the graphics can be used

12 Example Rubric for a Venn Diagram Correctly identifies four shared features Correctly identifies three contrasting features on each side Uses examples and evidence from text to support statements Makes valid inferences and hypotheses Summarizes using own words Effectively explains to partner how to use the GO

13 Types of Graphic Responses Clustering Semantic Webs and Organizers Story Maps Venn Diagrams Time Lines Flow Charts Drawing/Sketching Cartoons

14 Clustering A special form of representing-to-learn Right-brained outlining Key concept, term, or name in center circle with free association in outer circles in whatever pattern seems right Often reveals unrecognized connections and relationships Great for calling up prior knowledge or recollecting lost information

15 Semantic Webs and Organizers Maps or diagrams of ideas that help us remember terms, concepts, ingredients, or relationships Help students chart content or knowledge in order to plug it into their brain or memorize it Used for hierarchically organizing information Outlines presented in visual form

16 Story Maps Diagrams or maps of the events in a story or narrative, often done chronologically Can apply to both literature and to historical narrative

17 Venn Diagrams Two or three interlocking circles to display the contrasts and similarities Help you to map out a comparison/contrast text structure

18 Time Lines Another familiar combination of graphics and writing, applied to chronology Works best when cartoons or other illustrations are added

19 Flow Charts Help you keep track of the sequence of events Ideas or events arranged in their logical, sequential order with arrows drawn between ideas to indicate how one idea or even flows into another

20 Drawing/Sketching The graphic equivalent of free writing Original drawings to illustrate ideas found in reading, discussion, and inquiry Can be used to probe passages or quotations in reading materials Labels or captions can be mixed with lines and forms

21 Cartoons Another combination of words and drawing, Can be quick response or fine art Can be a key strategy to get reluctant writers to put words on a page (balloons or captions)

22 Think in Threes Asks students to go beyond either/or thinking (yes/no, right/wrong, good/bad) Encourages students to consider a subject from more than one side

23 Warning! Dont turn graphic organizers into worksheets. They can be misinterpreted and overused. They should be used sparingly and judiciously, with careful attention to how well they fit your purpose. Train students to draw their own, rather than rely on wholesale photocopying. Use visuals more than once.

24 Sources Makes Sense Strategies – Tools for Thought: Graphic Organizers for Your Classroom by Jim Burke Janet Allen –

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