The Curriculum Drives the Use (and Choice) of Graphic Organizers
Graphic Organizers, because of their popularity and widespread use, can be used by a teacher in the less-than-productive, activity-driven classroom.
The seduction of using what is handy, using what students like...instead of using the right Graphic Organizer tool for the job is easy to slide into.
However, not every teaching and learning task requires (although most can benefit from) a Graphic Organizer tool.
The Graphic Organizer tool that you want is the one that saves you time as it communicates curriculum concepts and creative ideas to your students.
The Graphic Organizer that you don't want is the one that is on the next page from the one you just used in that $14.95 Black Line book that you bought last month.
The right Graphic Organizer tool is the one that you notice is providing payoffs in clearer communication, or, more work for the same amount of time and effort in your instructional preparation.
Use the Graphic Organizers that you can prove are effective in helping children learn.
Graphic Organizers and Thematic Units
Thematic Units provide the perfect environment for using Graphic Organizers.
Thematic Units focus upon concepts, not discrete bits of information. Students build cognitive connections and information prowess as various content area subjects are integrated and explored.
Students who create and share meaning become information managers, information brokers and information architects; instead of meager consumers of information.