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Learning to Achieve Trainer Snippet #6

Content Learning

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Module #7 Content Learning

Participant Guide


Graphic Organizers increase learning.

As a tool to support students’ thinking and learning processes, research studies have shown that graphic organizers help students:

1.     Brainstorm ideas

2.     Develop, organize, and communicate ideas.

3.     See connections, patterns, and relationships.

4.     Assess and share prior knowledge

5.     Develop vocabulary

6.     Highlight important ideas

7.     Classify or categorize concepts, ideas and information


1.     Use graphic organizers in math.

2.     Use graphic organizers  in reading

3.     Use graphic organizers to write essays.


Simply googling on graphic organizers provides a vast library of graphic organizers for use with our students.

Below are just a few examples for the following categories:

·       Five Paragraph Essay

·       Cause and Effect

·       Compare and Contrast

·       Main Idea


Resources from Learning to Achieve:

Division on Learning Disabilities and Division of Research of the Council for Exceptional Children (2007).  A focus on graphic organizers:  Power tool for teaching students with learning disabilities.  Current Practice Alerts, 13. 1-4.

Ellis, E. (2008) Makes sense strategies 4 learning (CD) Lillian, A.L.: masterminds Publishing.   

Resources from MTLINCS:

Email:  February 7, 2011

Language and Literacy Resources: Graphic Organizers for Content Areas

Click here to access a great teacher resource of graphic organizers for reading strategies, vocabulary development, academic writing, history/social studies, language, and science/math …

MTLINCS Email:  May 7, 2011

Graphic Organizers with UDL

This resource includes an introduction to graphic organizers and includes a discussion of the research evidence for their effectiveness. It also addresses important questions about graphic organizers that are relevant to classroom practice, including whether graphic organizers are beneficial to students with disabilities and what instructional context makes them most effective.

MTLINCS Posting:  2/9/09

Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day

MTLINCS Posting:  4/19/08

Visual Resource II - Graphic Organizers

... Teaching story structure using graphic “maps” is one of the research-supported comprehension strategies (in the Report of the National Reading Panel). Graphic organizers (in general) are also one of the categories of research-based comprehension strategies. You might create a map to make the structure/organization of expository text more “visible.”

Susan McShane (as posted on NIFL's Family Literacy Discussion List)

Here are a couple of websites with free graphic organizers.



Submitted by Shirley Burns, L2A Trainer