Visuals for You, Me and Posterity!
Most teachers and trainers use visuals to help emphasize specific information, to give "form" or make concrete abstract concepts or connections, and to provide visual references for lectures, among many other uses. What has been talked about less, are the ways visuals can and do benefit the instructor, and in the following example, how they can support the relationship, progress and learning goals of teacher and theirfamily members. She was struggling with keeping track of all the different topics that had come up over time, and, wanted to insure even greater attention to reinforcement when appropriate. One of the ways she has attended to these issues is through the use of one type of visual, web charts. Here's what she did and discovered: I've started using a one-page web format to keep track of students' individual information, our topics (generative themes), and the materials we use. It's already proven useful as a one-glance review for me as I prepare for lessons. It also is a good visual reference for us when talking about student progress and interests. As Linda has continued this practice, she's also found that at times, it can be difficult to keep the charts up to date. What ideas do you have? I've also used charts/visuals as a reminder of some dimension of my teaching practice that I am working on improving. It may be that I created a dual connection "just for me" to an existing chart, or I may place a subtle visual reminder somewhere where I am sure to see it. In either case, it helps me to keep at the forefront of my mind whatever I am working on, personally, as I teach. How do you "remind" yourself of where you are stretching as you teach? What interesting and/or innovative ways are you using visuals? What visuals have you found more and less useful? For you wordsmiths, here's a visual resource you may not have seen yet: http://www.visualthesaurus.com