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Graphic organizer

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A graphic organizer, also known as a knowledge map, concept map, story
map (or storymap), cognitive organizer, advance organizer, or concept diagram, is
acommunication tool that uses visual symbols to express knowledge, concepts, thoughts, or ideas,
and the relationships between them.[1] The main purpose of a graphic organizer is to provide a visual
aid to facilitate learning and instruction.[1][dead link][2]


 1Forms
 2Enhancing students' skills
 3See also
 4References
 5External links

Graphic organizers take many forms:

Ishikawa's Cause & Effect diagram (fishbone chart)

 Relational Organizers
 storyboard
 fishbone -- Ishikawa diagram
 cause and effect web
 chart
 #Category/Classification Organizers
 concept mapping
 KWL tables
 mind mapping
 Sequence Organizers
 Chain
 Ladder
 Cycle
 Compare Contrast Organizers
 Dashboard (business)
 Venn diagrams
 Concept Development Organizers
 story web
 word web
 circle chart
 flow chart
 Options and Control Device Organizers
 mechanical control panel
 graphical user interface

K-W-L (Know, Want to Know, Learned)


o Description
o Purpose
o How to use the K-W-L strategy
o Example
K-W-L (Ogle, 1986) is an instructional reading strategy that is used to guide students through a text.
Students begin by brainstorming everything they Know about a topic. This information is recorded
in the K column of a K-W-L chart. Students then generate a list of questions about what they Want
to Know about the topic. These questions are listed in the W column of the chart. During or after
reading, students answer the questions that are in the W column. This new information that they
have Learned is recorded in the L column of the K-W-L chart.

The K-W-L strategy serves several purposes:
o Elicits students’ prior knowledge of the topic of the text.
o Sets a purpose for reading.
o Helps students to monitor their comprehension.
How to use the K-W-L strategy
1. Choose a text. This strategy works best with expository texts.

2. Create a K-W-L chart. The teacher should create a chart on the blackboard or on an overhead
transparency. In addition, the students should have their own chart on which to record information.
(Below is an example of a K-W-L chart.)

4. Ask students to brainstorm words, terms, or phrases they associate with a topic. The teacher and
students record these associations in the K column of their charts. This is done until students run out
of ideas.

o Have questions ready to help students brainstorm their ideas.
Sometimes students need more prompting than, “Tell me everything you know
about _____,” to get them started.

o Encourage students to explain their associations. This is especially important

for those associations that are vague or unusual. Ask, “What made you think of

Ask students what they want to learn about the topic. The teacher and students record these
questions in the W column of their charts. This is done until students run out of ideas for questions. If
students respond with statements, turn them into questions before recording them in the W column.

o Ask an alternative question for generating ideas for the W column. If, in
response to “What do you want to learn about this topic?” your students are
either having trouble coming up with ideas, or are saying, “nothing,” try asking
one of the following questions instead:

“What do you think you will learn about this topic from the text you will be

Choose an idea from the K column and ask, “What would you like to learn
more about this idea?”

o Come prepared with your own questions to add to the W column. You might
want students to focus on ideas in the text on which the students’ questions are
not likely to focus them. Be sure not too add too many of your own questions,
however. The majority of the questions in the W column should be student-

5. Have students read the text and fill out the L column of their charts. Students should look for the
answers to the questions in their W column. Students can fill out their L columns either during or
after reading.
o In addition to answering the W column questions, encourage students to write
in the L column anything they found especially interesting. To distinguish
between the answers to their questions and the ideas they found interesting,
have students code the information in their L columns. For example, they can
put a check mark next to the information that answers questions from the K
column. And they can put a star next to ideas that they found interesting.

o Have students consult other resources to find out the answers to questions that
were not answered in the text. (It is unlikely that all of the students’ questions
in the W column will be answered by the text.)

6. Discuss the information that students recorded in the L column.

Ogle, D.M. 1986. K-W-L: A teaching model that develops active reading of expository text. Reading
Teacher 39: 564-570.

Following is an example of a completed K-W-L chart that students might complete if they were
reading a text about gravity.


It keeps us What is gravity? Gravity is the force that pulls objects

from floating towards Earth.

It makes Why is there less gravity The amount of gravity there is

things fall. on the moon? depends on the masses of the
objects involved. The moon is a lot
less massive than the earth, so there
is less gravity on the moon than
there is on earth.

How did Newton discover

There is less gravity?
gravity on the
What determines how fast
Isaac Newton something will fall to the Air resistance determines how fast
something will fall to the ground.
discovered ground? (teacher
gravity. question)

* The students’ question about Newton was not answered in the text. Students should be encouraged
to consult other sources to find out the answer to this question.