Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Visual Learning: Inforgraphics

   I have always considered myself I visual learner. For some reason when I can see things up close, I have a much larger chance of remembering the information or being able to turn around and use that information. With this week's class focus on visual learning, I am so excited to learn about new tools that would help me expand my visual learning experiences for my students.

   The first topic I decided to learn more about is infographics. Infographics are visuals that can take any topic and present it to an audience in a different way, making it more understandable to a wider audience. Take the Vietnam War for example. In  1982 it was built to honor and remember those that died or went missing in action. I could sit here and write out a paragraph or list of facts about the wall, but who want to read that? Instead, I can show you this.

from History.com 
 Last school year my students read a story called Always to Remember: The Vision of Maya Ying Lin by Christopher Williams. We talk a lot about the Vietnam Wall, but I believe this infographic gives them so much information in such a way the students really enjoy reading it and gathering facts about the wall Maya Ying Lin created.

   My extent of using infographics started and stopped with the picture to your left. I had no idea I could make my own visuals like this one if I found the right website.

   I am excited to say that I took some time tonight to look into a list of infographic creators: easelly, infogr.am, infographic archieve, ManyEyes, Piktochart, and usual.ly.

   The first site I explored was easelly. Right off the bat the creators I have nice Prezi video that explains how to navigate their website. I notice lots of these webtools do this and I couldn't appreciate it more!  Positives include easily signing up with my Google+ account, the ease of moving around the website, cloning objects, and saving to share. Negatives include the time it takes. I could see myself spending an hour trying to make one great graphic for my students. Another negative is there was no search bar for finding objects. And my final concern was the limit of graphics available. If I wanted more there was a monthly fee.

Here is the one I made! Not too bad for my first one.

I also spent some time playing around on the Infographic site, Piktochart. This page also had a nice explanatory video for users to watch. Like easelly, you have to sign up (I did so easily again with Google+) and there is an option to pay for more features. Right away I got a tutorial from someone at Piktochart who gave me cheat sheets for making the best infographic possible. I did not go all the way through with making another graphic from this site, but I did enjoy exploring its features.   

1 comment:

  1. Good observations, Lisa. As a rule, I tend toward visual organizers more than infographics for the very reason you mentioned--they take quite a while to create. Though, they are impressive. I use it as a 2-3 week project for middle schoolers (at 45 minutes twice a week)--that's a commitment.

    I like your analysis of CC. You remind me of one point that I think is often forgotten about the benefit of CC: Subjects like reading (and vocabulary) are taught across subjects, not just in one class. Duh. Sounds like common sense.