Activities to Teach Students to Read Graphic Organizers

Graphic organizers are visual tools that assist learners by organizing information in a way that is more comprehensible and easier to retain. These tools are critical for helping readers of all ages, but they are especially beneficial to young learners who are tackling reading for the first time. As a teacher, you can use several activities to teach students how to use graphic organizers as they develop their reading skills.

1. Reading Comprehension

One of the most practical ways to teach students how to use graphic organizers is through reading comprehension. To begin, select a short story or passage and have the students read it independently. Once they have completed the reading, provide them with a blank graphic organizer and ask them to organize the fundamental elements of the story using the tool. Depending on the students’ grade level, you can customize the graphic organizer by offering different shapes and symbols.

2. Story Map

A story map is a graphic organizer that focuses on the unique elements of a story such as the characters, setting, conflict, and resolution. When using this tool with students, begin by collaborating on each section of the story map and asking them to identify specific details in the text that relate to each category. This activity is an excellent introduction for young students to understand the structure of a narrative.

3. Cause and Effect

The cause and effect graphic organizer is a useful tool to teach students about the relationship between events. After reading a particular story, ask students to identify the cause and effect relationships between multiple events. Having this visual on paper can often help students better understand these sometimes complex relationships.

4. Character Analysis

The character analysis graphic organizer can help students better understand a character’s motivations, traits, and changes throughout a story. After reading a piece of literature or story, have the students fill in the character organizer with specifics of the character’s personality, physical traits, and actions. Additionally, having a graphic organizer that shows a character arc can assist learners in noting how the character changes throughout the narrative.

5. Comparison and Contrast

Another useful graphic organizer is the comparison and contrast organizer. This tool is effective as it compares and contrasts two different items, themes, or characters. After reading, split your class into two smaller groups to analyze the two main subjects of the comparison and contrast graphic organizer. Once the groups have completed the individual graphic organizers, bring them together to discuss their findings.

In conclusion, graphic organizers can be beneficial in developing critical reading skills. By using interactive graphic organizers during reading comprehension, story mapping, cause and effect relationships, character analysis, and comparison and contrast exercises, students will develop a more in-depth understanding of literature and improve their reading comprehension all around. These activities will help students acquire the necessary skills to critically think about novels, articles, and passages. With these exercises in your arsenal, you can help to boost your students’ literacy skills and understanding of complex storylines.

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