Give Me Smore!

SmoreDo you remember those days in school when your teacher assigned you to create a poster about a particular topic and then displayed them on the classroom bulletin board?  Perhaps that was actually the beginning of what we now called infographics. There are a number of tools available for creating engaging visual displays and Smore is one that’s easy to use.

Infographics are quickly becoming the way we gather and display simple as well as complex information whether it’s charts and graphs or groups of resources for a particular topic.  Smore is a tool, currently in beta, that provides users with templates for quickly building infographics or flyers. Templates allow the addition of text, audio, video, images and more. The flyer below was created in about 30 minutes.

Classroom Applications

Introduce a Unit of Study
Create a flyer highlighting some web resources you’ll be using for your study. Use the text to propose questions that will be answered throughout the unit such as,  “How is global warming affecting biodiversity and what impact will that have on future generations?” “If  we can manufacture vehicles that are more energy efficient, what effect might that have on our economy?”

Support an Argument
Ask students to build a compelling visual to support an argument. For example, “Should bounce houses be banned from use at backyard celebrations?” For this, students might gather links for websites and displays data showing the increase in popularity or the rate of injury.

Create a poster to

  • describe the effects on the economy of our current “fiscal cliff.”
  • convince your principal that the use of cell phones will have an impact on learning
  • choose an endangered animal and use images, statistics and information to campaign for its protection
  • present evidence that the food served in the cafeteria is either adequate or inadequate for the nutritional needs of students your age.

The visual nature of this tool makes it well suited for creatively displaying information.  What ideas do you have for the instructional use of infographics?

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