Some students with LD find graphic organizers helpful in mapping ideas during the planning stage. Graphic organizers such as Inspiration provide organizational frameworks to help writers generate topics and content for writing projects. Inspiration shows ideas in graphic “bubbles” that can be moved and then converted into a standard outline (Male, 1997).
While graphic organizers are more commonly used in student’s English classes, they are also used and are beneficial in math classes for students as well. “Close to half of secondary students with LD perform more than three grade levels below their enrolled grade in essential academic skills 45% in reading, 44% in math” (NCLD). Students who struggle in English class will have overlapping issues in their math class. Students are required in English class as well as math to be able to decipher language, word problems, spatial awareness, memory, etc.
Why Graphic Organizers are Important
Types of Graphic Organizers
Frayer Model: This model states the definition of the concept, characteristics, examples, and what the concept is not. Click this to get ->Examples of grade 8 Frayer Models that can be used in the class.
Verbal and Visual Word Association: This style of graphic organizer helps students develop vocabulary and provides a visual to help reinforce memory. Students are also required to provide their own definition and describe how the word is connected into their own life. Provide real life connections helps assist students in remembering the concept.
Venn Diagram: This visual form of a graphic organizer, helps students to see similarities and difference in various concepts.
KWL Charts: This graphic organizer has students list what they already Know about a concept, what they Want to know, and what they have Learned.
SOLVE: Is a great graphic organizer to use for math, especially with word problems. Students need to Study the problem, they can write notes on the main question. Then they need to Organize the facts. From there they Line up a plan by writing out the steps that they need to take. They then Verify their plan, by checking the math. Finally they Evaluate the answer.
Actual Students Using a Graphic Organizer
Graphic organizers are a great tool to use in all content areas. My primary reason for my focus on math is to provide other ways of teaching math. From my own experiences math is generally taught with worksheets that have numbers on them and written problems on the board. Since all students learn differently, not just students who are LD, graphic organizers help to provide students with a visual and an alternative way of learning and remembering various math concepts. The graphic organizers help students break down the language within math and be able to see it in a visual manor. Graphic organizers also help students comprehend the material in a written and visual way by clearly laying out the problems and solutions.
Links With Graphic Organizer Examples
LdOnline. (2001). Tech Tools for Students with Learning Disabilities: Infusion into Inclusive Classrooms. http://www.ldonline.org/article/6380/
National Center for Learning Disabilities. (2010). Learning Disabilities Fast Facts. http://www.ncld.org/types-learning-disabilities/what-is-ld/learning-disability-fast-facts