The aim of education should be to teach us rather how to think, than what to think. -James Beattie

Entries Tagged as 'Thinking Map'

Brace Map

May 10, 2012 by saslockhurst · No Comments · Thinking Map

ANALYZING WHOLE OBJECTS AND PARTS

A brace map is used to look up the whole object and its parts.  On the first line on the far left, the student writes the whole object.  Then in the brace, the students write the different parts of the whole object.  If those parts can be broken down even more, students can add another brace and its parts.  This is a great thinking map to help students visualize all the components in something.  In the classroom, students have used a brace map to describe the parts of the year, parts of an animal, parts of a plant,  parts of the world, and in the upper grades, parts of different systems, like the body system and the solar system.  Here are some examples of brace maps that I found to illustrate how they are used.

At  Home:

* Have your child make a brace map of the ingredients in a recipe you are making together.

* Make a brace map of a plant in your garden.

* Recreate a brace map of something that your child is learning in the classroom to reinforce what they are learning.

* Make a brace map of the parts of your family pet.

Disclaimer: The views on this site are entirely our own. They do not represent or are they endorsed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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Flow Map

April 26, 2012 by saslockhurst · No Comments · Thinking Map

SEQUENCING

A flow map is probably one of the thinking maps we most often see.  Presentations often use flow charts to show operations, data, or a solution to a problem.  Flow maps are used to teach students the process or order of things.  Each stage goes in a box using words or pictures, connected with arrows in between each stage.  smaller boxes can be drawn below the stages to show substages.  In the classroom, we use flow maps to sequence the events in history, the development of a story, or the steps on how to make or do something.  Like the other thinking maps, flow maps can also be used to help children with their writing.  Each box helps the students to organize their ideas in order for them to write sentences.

Here are some examples of flow maps.

At Home:

* Have your child make a flow map when learning a new chore.

* Make a flow map of activities you will do on a trip.

* Make a flow map of things to do when you are planning a party.  Make a flow map of the order of the activities during the party.

* Make a flow map for studying events in history.

* Play a game to see who can follow the directions written on flow map.

Disclaimer: The views on this site are entirely our own. They do not represent or are they endorsed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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Double Bubble Map

April 16, 2012 by saslockhurst · No Comments · Thinking Map

COMPARE AND CONTRAST

Last week we shared how to use a bubble map to describe.  This week we would like to share with you the double bubble map.  Sometimes the children get confused between the two thinking maps, even though they are used for different purposes.  A double bubble map is used to compare and contrast.  The two items that will be compared are written in the two larger circles.  The center bubbles are the things they have in common and the circles on the outside are true only for the separate items.  This is essentially a Venn diagram, what most of us are familiar with.  (A student once told me that a Venn diagram is the old school version of a double bubble map!)

This map helps the students to look at something and organize their thoughts.  In kindergarten, we use this thinking map every week.  At the end of the weekly lessons, the children are asked to compare and contrast two of stories that we read during the week.  A bubble map helps the children to see the comparisons and the differences.

Note: When using a double bubble map, you do not need to have opposite points for the differences.  For example if there is a girl in one story, you don’t need to write no girls in the story on the opposite bubble.

At Home:

* Compare and contrast two family members.

* Compare and contrast two stories that you read together.  Discuss which story you liked better.

* Compare and contrast places that you visit.  My children compared and contrasted Taiwanese night markets to the one we went to on the weekend.

* Make a double bubble map to compare two items to determine which item you want to buy or which place you want to visit.

Disclaimer: The views on this site are entirely our own. They do not represent or are they endorsed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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Bubble Map

April 10, 2012 by saslockhurst · No Comments · Thinking Map

FOR DESCRIBING

It has been a while since we have talked about thinking maps, so we thought we would continue explaining and describing the different thinking maps.  Thinking maps are graphic organizers for students to organize their thoughts.  Any thinking map can be used to help students with their writing.  A bubble map is used to describe nouns by using adjectives.  In the center circle, you write the noun that is being described. Then you write the adjectives on the outside circles.  This a good way for students to come up with words that can help them in their writing.  Adjectives are taught starting in kindergarten, and this is a great way for students to organize their ideas.  Here are some examples of bubble maps.

 

We often use bubble maps to describe characters or objects in a story.  This map helps students to look at an object carefully in detail.

At Home:

-Have your child describe people in the family.

-Describe a favorite food, candy, or game.

-Use a bubble map to describe a place that you have visited.

-You can play a game by writing the adjectives and then have your child guess what you are describing.

 

Disclaimer: The views on this site are entirely our own.  They do not represent or are they endorsed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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Tree Map Part 1

September 20, 2011 by saslockhurst · No Comments · Thinking Map

FOR CLASSIFYING AND CATEGORIZING

A tree map is used to classify things or ideas. At the top of the tree map is the big idea or the main idea of the discussion, and the number of branches below depends on how many categories there are for the topic. For example, today in health we created a tree map of feelings. Students cut out pictures of people with different feelings, and we placed them under the correct branch of the tree map.

The students are also in the process of making a tree map of the five senses in science. Under each branch of the tree map are post-its with examples for each sense.

Similar to the circle map we can also use a tree map to pull out words and talk or pull out words and write. Students are given the sentence frame:

I can see the ________________.

I can smell the _______________.

I can taste the ________________.

By using post-its, I can pull the word off the tree map and place them in the blank spaces of the sentence frame. Having students visually see the word placed there can help students when they write.

Another example is from a second grade class. The students were asked to create their own tree map of long vowel sound words with the vowel consonant e spelling. By first grade, students are asked to create their own thinking maps.

In the next part on tree maps, we would like to share how the tree map is used in writing. This thinking map is used to build simple paragraphs into a five paragraph essay.

At Home, you can have your child :

- create a tree map of short vowel or long vowel words.

- create a tree map of facts.

- create a tree map of rules at home, rules at school, and rules in the car.

-summarize a story by using a tree map with branches for the beginning, middle, and end of a story.

Disclaimer: The views on this site are entirely our own. They do not represent or are they endorsed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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Circle Map

September 13, 2011 by saslockhurst · 2 Comments · Thinking Map

The circle… such an important shape! It is the shape of

the sun…

the wheel…

the atom…

the peace sign…

and the pizza.

And then there is the Circle Map.

                           FOR DEFINING IN CONTEXT

A circle map is used to organize information during a brainstorming session or to jot down prior knowledge.  The center circle is the big idea or the topic of discussion and all the ideas go within the larger circle.  For example, today we created a circle map on things kindergarteners can do at school.

After filling in the circle map, I write a sentence frame on the board.

In Kindergarten I can _______________________.

The students read the frame and pull a word from the circle map to complete the sentence.

The students then write the sentence in their journal using the sentence frame and circle map.  The goal is for students to speak in complete sentences and write a complete idea.

This is a kindergarten example, but a circle map is used throughout the grade levels.  In the upper grades, it is used to brainstorm what the students already know about Native Americans before beginning the social studies unit. Students can use a circle map to brainstorm ideas for a writing piece or to list details in a story.  It can also be used to help the students develop vocabulary. By having students write synonyms and phrases that relate to a content area word, they gain a better understanding of the term. Students can use a circle map to write what they already know or new knowledge learned.

At Home:

- Try having your child brainstorm ideas for a writing assignment in a circle map.

- Ask your child to write down everything they know about a topic.

- Brainstorm vacation ideas in a circle map.

- Play a game.  Jot down some details in a circle map and have your child try to guess the big idea.

Disclaimer: The views on this site are entirely our own.  They do not represent or are they endorsed by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

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