A Periodic Table of Visualization Methods

As a full-time education consultant, Allison Zmuda works with educators to grow ideas on how to make learning for students challenging, possible and worthy of the attempt. Over the past 19 years, Zmuda has shared curricular, assessment, and instructional ideas, shown illustrative examples, and offered practical strategies of how to get started.

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periodic-table-of-visualization-methodsThe title does not do justice to this powerful chart. The chart describes the myriad of ways learners can think deeply about evidence in order to create generalizations, draw conclusions, and make predictions. When you hover over a particular element, up pops a visual of what that particular method looks like to help your design decision making process.

A few examples:

Mi – Mindmap


V – Vee Diagram

Vee Diagram

Sa – Sankey Diagram

Sankey Diagram

Visual Curriculum

This dovetails with another blog post I discovered through my morning stroll around the Internet entitled, 5 Strategies for a Student-Centered and Visual Curriculum. As educators, our challenge is not only to teach visual literacy skills as readers but also creators.

Author Terri Heick explains, “By allowing students to transition from consuming to producing visual data, they’re also transitioning from reading to writing. But more importantly, learners are given active tasks that require active thinking–including design, and the relationship between audience, purpose, and design.



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