Goochland CrestAdvance & Graphical Organizers:
Proven Strategies Enhanced through Technology

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Goochland County Public Schools

Navigation: What is an Advance Organizer? | How do I use Advance Organizers? | What are the Different Types of Advance Organizers? | Technology Benefits | Using Imagery Knowledge | How to Tap into Imagery Knowledge | Creating Graphic Organizers | Computer Based Tools

Using Advance Organizers

Educational researchers have shown that the activation of prior knowledge is critical to learning of all types. You can view (and print, if you like) this information, organized in a cluster map.

The theories and research-backing described in this outline is derived from my notes from chapters 6 & 10 from Classroom Instruction that Works by Robert J. Marzano, Debra J. Pickering, and Jane E. Pollock.

What is an Advance Organizer?

How do I Use Advance Organizers?

What are the different types of Advance Organizers?

Benefits of Technology Used with Graphic and Advance Organizers

Using Imagery Knowledge

Allan Paivio's Dual-Coding Theory of Information Storage [link 1, link 2, link 3] proposes that knowledge is stored in two forms:

How to Tap into Imagery Knowledge

Creating Graphic Organizers

Graphic Organizers combine the linguistic and non-linguistic modes of information storage

Other Imagery Methods

Examples of Graphical and Advance Organizers

The following examples pair an advanced and/or graphical organizer with a Virginia SOL. These are all designed with the following guidelines:

Example 1

SOL 3.11—Science
Resource: Web Link: Kids Zone

Students covering this SOL investigate different types of energy sources, consider renewable and nonrenewable energy sources, and identify uses of energy. A lesson on this topic could involve a visit to the site linked above, where student essays are published on these topics.

Energy Gov Website

The organizer used here is skimming. Students skim the webpage for a limited period of time, then discuss answers to questions in small groups. Questions to consider? "How can we (personally) save energy on a typical school day? Why do we keep using more energy each year? How could we save money at home?

Example 2

SOL K5—Science
Resource: Teacher-Created AppleWorks Template

Students in Kindergarten must identify the different forms of water: solid, liquid, and gas. The organizer in this case is drawing. The teacher designs a template in AppleWorks drawing mode by creating three Paint areas. Students will use the computer to draw a picture in each area that includes one of the three states of water. Colors around the box are used to identify which state of matter goes where, and a helpful graphic from AppleWorks' clippings was added to give the students some "inspiration."

This activity could also be printed out, and drawing and coloring could take place on paper. The act of drawing is kinesthetic.


Download the AppleWorks Template

Example 3

SOL 2.8—Social Studies
Resource: Acting Out, iMovie; Play money

Students in the second grade must discriminate between barter exchange and money exchange for goods and services. This organizer is multi-part. First, a teacher might act-out, or role play with a student, a trade for his pencil. Later, when the student needs the pencil, he can "buy" it back from the teacher using play money.

Next, at a different time, students in small groups will act out the differences between exchange through the use of barter and money. Skits will be recorded by the teacher on video tape.

Finally, at a later stage, students will edit the footage of video set up for them on the computer using iMovie. Students can use voice-overs in the editing process to define the difference between bartering and money use. This activity is kinesthetic and involves the manipulation of multimedia (imagery knowledge) to discriminate between the two types of exchange.

The video product may be used in a student portfolio assessment by the instructor, if so desired. A pictograph (as seen above) may be used to show the sequence of events required to produce a video, if so desired.

Example 4

SOL 6.8—Science
Resource: Inpsiration or AppleWorks, MS Office

Students in the sixth grade investigate life processes of organisms. This activity encourages students to think abstractly, and would make an excellent advanced organizer after some study of SOL 6.8 had taken place.

Inspiration Template

This is an adapted Process/Cause-Effect Organizer
Download the Inspiration Template

Three life processes are listed in this diagram, obviously these will be studied this day in class. Without life processes we would die. How do humans adapt when these processes are in jeopardy?

Students will fill-out the "preventions" in the diagram, providing the answers such as "antibiotics, adoption," or "IV fluids." Students can produce this diagram, or complete a teacher-generated template, using a variety of software. Inspiration makes this type of diagramming a breeze. Inspiration also comes with many pre-made graphic organizer templates.

Example 5

SOL 4.3—English/Language Arts
Resources: Inpsiration or AppleWorks, MS Office

ENG SOL 4.3 requires students to know the differences between synonyms and antonyms and to know what homonyms are. This graphical organizer is a concept pattern organizer.

Inspiration Document

Download the Inspiration File

This graphic organizer can be used in many different ways—as an informal assessment tool, as a cue tool, as an advance organizer, or a collaborative activity. Concept Pattern Organizers begin with a concept in the center (synonyms and antonyms). Characteristics branch-away from the main concept. Under each characteristic (in this case, a definition), examples branch away. Students may fill in any number of parts on this diagram, or, fit the words into a diagram themselves.

The use of more abstact pairs here (terrible, wonderful; serious, silly) qualifies this as an advance organizer.

Computer- Based Organizational Tools

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Examples Copyright © 2003 Goochland County Public Schools