“Your message is only as good as your ability to share it.” These powerful words sum up a great video explaining the importance of infographics.
These days there are many ways to grab someone’s attention through infographics. Canva, vizualize.me & Piktochart, to name a few, are in my opinion some of the best ones out there. I’ve used them all in the past for various projects and presentations. Just three days ago, fellow Coetail’er Pana Asavavatana used Canva to quickly add some aesthetic appeal to the Twitter questions I created in preparation for our upcoming Digital Citizenship Twitter Chat on February 28th. Here’s a sneak peek & a shameless plug 🙂
Speaking of infographics and Coetail’ers I couldn’t help but think about the recently redesigned Coetail website which prominently features an awesome infographic documenting the Coetail Learning journey. I find the new website to be fun, engaging, and informative.
Sketching, Doodling & Synthesising Data
With all the sites, apps and tools out there now to help you collect and organize information. I’ve recently been made aware of the beauty of sketchnotes. Being a visual learner, I’ve found myself being drawn to sketch notes more and more. (no pun intended) The ones I’ve come across on Twitter lately have been quite engaging and I’m seriously considering giving it a go. Craighton Berman’s website, Sktechnotes 101, was a great jumping off point and inspired me to dig a little deeper. After a while down the rabbit hole, I found out there’s actually a World Sktechnote Day (Jan 11) & that sketchnoting is a creative, relaxing, AND efficient way to synthesize information. What I once thought was silly or a bit out of place, now seems like the perfect way to personally conceptualize data.
In the following TED Talk Doodlers, unite!, Sunni Brown discusses some other misconceptions about sketching and doodling as well as our inherited cultural bias towards them. Check out the video from Sunni or alternatively the Sketchnotes from @andymcnally, below.
Discuss Sktech Notes and TED using Sketch Notes….
- Sketching notes helps us understand concepts.
- When we make our thinking into images we synthesize our ideas
- Visual Notetaking enhances memory and improves understanding.
- Visual Notetaking and sketching exercises your brain by connecting verbal material to visual material
Infographics in Kindergarten
As I alluded to in my previous blog post, Unpacking Visual Literacy in Kindergarten, visual material plays a massive role in the development of my Kindergarten student’s vocabulary, conceptual thought, and imagination. It is the cornerstone of their comprehension.
Aside from picture books, the most popular items in my classroom are our “Learner Profile Badges”.
Inspired by the Olympics, I turned the LP images into medals (or badges as my students know them) as a way to introduce the language and visually represent the Learner Profile attributes. When a student sees another student embodying these attributes they will take the badge off the wall and hang it around the next of that student. Since it’s inception, they’ve really taken to it. The way they proudly wear the “Risk Taker badge” or “Thinker badge” around on the playground, you would think it’s actually a gold medal – to them, it is. Because of these images and the idea of passing them off as badges, my students have developed an understanding of the vocabulary and continue to make a strong commitment towards living out the learner profile.
Another Infographic that I use in my Kindergarten class is for self-management and it’s known in class as the Kelso’s Choice Wheel. Have a look!
Teaching children to reflect on their actions is an important yet challenging aspect of Kindergarten. Our Kelso Wheel acts as an intervention infographic that provides students with multiple choices allowing them to feel empowered to take their own action. A self-governing classroom of five-year-old students will certainly take time but as seen in the image below, my students often revisit the image throughout the year to work on working out their conflicts.
For more information on Kelso’s Choices, including other images, videos, and songs check out TES Teach here.
In this case, the two ways in which I use images to convey meaning help my Kindergarten students make informed choices to solve conflict and model positive behavior and attitudes inspired by the Learner Profile. Both the Learner Profile badges and Kelso’s Choice Wheel act as aids to connect the verbal to the visual. From foreign vocabulary to understandable concepts, both visual aids have allowed them to responsibility for their own actions.
Knowing that the Kelso Wheel and Learning Profile images are not your typical or classic infographics, I’m wondering what other types of infographics could you introduce to Kindergarten students?
What other ways could I incorporate infographics into a Kindergarten classroom?
Do you have a favorite website or app for creating infographics?
What experience do you have with Sketchnotes?