Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The Importance of Graphic Organizers as Learning Tools

One of the best teaching and writing learning tools that I used with my struggling writers and ESL students were graphic organizers. This summer I have been tutoring 3 soon to be 5th grade Korean girls and have been working on Compare and Contrasting, Sequencing, and Main Idea and Details. When they started school this past January they were Non-English Speaking and have come such a long way. In the first picture below they are comparing and contrasting two stories.
Here is a sample of a story sequence.
In an article by Dr. Katherine McKnight she states, " Graphic organizers are teaching and learning tools; when they are integrated into classroom experiences, students are better able to understand new material. Creating a strong visual picture, graphic organizers support students by enabling them to literally see connections and relationships between facts, information, and terms."     

Click on the video to listen to Dr. McKnight. You can read more from Dr. McKnight by clicking HERE

For young or beginning writers I liked to use retelling the story with different types of graphic organizers such as the one below: Beginning-Middle -End. Students draw a picture and write a sentence about what happened at the Beginning, Middle and End, of the story.
For students learning to sequence a story I made the graphic organizer below. I put transition words at the left so that students will eventually be able to use this organizer to help them write a paragraph or narrative which is an ELA Common Core Writing Standard.

For young or beginning writers learning to write informative texts I designed this 4 Bubble Web. In the middle students will put the Main Idea and then draw and label 4 different details. For example, if they read a book about Community Helpers that would be the main idea and a policeman, fire fighter, school crossing guard, and teacher might be the 4 details from the book.
These are just 3 of the Writing graphic organizers I have put together in my revised Free Writing Graphic Organizers packet. There are 3 differentiated Sequence Graphic Organizers to meet the needs of all the students in your classroom. 
You can download this freebie by clicking on the picture below. I hope these will help your students improve their writing throughout the school year.
Looking for some more Great Stuff for Teachers? Then follow me on Pinterest. I have lots of Educational boards. Here are a few below you may want to check out. 

Thanks for all you do to make a difference for your students. Hope you will find these useful. I would truly appreciate your feedback.

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What kinds of writing graphic organizers do you use in your classroom?

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