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Visualizing Stories

I recently found a video of 1st graders using the iPad to visualize a poem that their teacher read to them. After students drew what they imagined, they got into pairs and explained their drawings to a partner. The teacher also circulated to listen and to ask deeper questions of understanding.

The concept  inspired our Kindergarten teacher and me to try something similar with our five and 6 year old students. Learning how to listen or read a story and being able to visualize the setting, characters and storyline is an important skill. Being able to “translate” one media (oral text) to another (an illustration)  is a critical literacy skill.

Our librarian helped pick a book “How do Dinosaurs say Happy Chanukah”, appropriate for this time of year. The Kindergarten teacher explained to the children, that she would be reading the book to them without showing them the pictures. A gasp was heard around the room: “What? No pictures?”. Instead they were asked to use their imagination and draw the pictures in their heads first.

We then handed out the iPads and ask them to draw the picture they had formed in their heads on the iPad with the help of Doodle Buddy. Once finished, we saved the images and emailed them to the teacher.

Dinosaurs And Chanukah from langwitches on Vimeo.

How could we expand the above visualization technique to other grade levels and subject areas?

  • have students visualize math word problems
  • create visual notes when watching a movie
  • introduce and perfect sketchnoting skills
  • documenting a science project or lab
  • summarizing a book read

How do you see visualization techniques embedded into your area of influence?

Currently there are "20 comments" on this Article:

  1. New blog post: Visualizing Stories in Kindergarten- http://t.co/Phken6uU Stepping stones to becoming a sketchnote taker #kinderchat

  2. [from cogdog] Visualizing Stories | Langwitches Blog: I recently found a video of 1st graders using the iPad to … http://t.co/tYJ0QmhB

  3. Visualizing Stories: I recently found a video of 1st graders using the iPad to visualize a poem that their teach… http://t.co/bZwbKJ6N

  4. @sjgorman says:

    Visualizing Stories on the iPad Langwitches Blog http://t.co/Ymk1JqAe #edtech #mlearning #adedu

  5. Langwitches Blog | The Magic of Learning http://t.co/yaEZ3pN1 #iear #mlearning #iPadEd #edtech

  6. Visualizing Stories | Langwitches Blog http://t.co/dm8kXDiE #ipaded

  7. @ictregister says:

    Young children using iPads to visualise stories & poems & to introduce sketchnoting skills @langwitches http://t.co/JL3jkRVW #ipad #ipaded

  8. @darjohn says:

    Visualizing Stories | Langwitches Blog http://t.co/WL7ji6V7

  9. @janefree11 says:

    Nice lesson for visualizing stories. http://t.co/DoNioYwF #deafed #spedchat

  10. @jbennett4 says:

    Visualizing Stories | Langwitches Blog http://t.co/mbXR3Ta3

  11. @craff2008 says:

    always awesome – Visualizing Stories | Langwitches Blog http://t.co/iGuAUkmz

  12. Langwitches Blog  http://t.co/xnbDkux4 more examples of integrating technology with powerful learning #mlearning #ipaded #edchat #edtech

  13. I am a student at the University of South Alabama, and I am majoring in elementary education. I have never heard of this type of strategy in the classroom. I find this very intriguing. Teaching the students how to imagine different scenarios and the different ways things could look, and then comparing them can be helpful in the real world. It teaches them how to come up with their own ideas, but also look at the ideas of others, because you never know if their idea makes more sense to you or they may lik your’s better. I will be doing this in my future classrooms for years to come. Thank you for taking your time and posting this up for other teachers to see, learn, and use.

  14. @ldimitrov says:

    A great activity but where does the tech in this case do something we couldn’t do without it? Visualizing Stories http://t.co/xUOpJKw1

  15. Linda says:

    I love this lesson idea and believe the skills being taught are valuable and meaningful but wonder about the need for tech here. How do you see the iPad assisting in enhancing learning by doing something we couldn’t do without it? I suppose the images can be shared farther afield than the immediate classroom but is there more?

  16. [...] Visualizing Stories | Langwitches Blog [...]

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