The First Four

Why not have your kids answer questions with an infographic?  Many people associate infographics to data and mathematically thinking, but infographics can be used for anything.  Google defines infographic as “a visual image such as a chart or diagram used to represent information or data.”

Lets consider these two Eighth Grade Social Studies standards:

  1. Describe the country’s physical landscapes, political divisions, and territorial expansion during the terms of the first four presidents. (California State Standard 8.4.1)
  2. Outline the major treaties with American Indian nations during the administrations of the first four presidents and the varying outcomes of those treaties.  (California State Standard 8.5.3)


Click the image to see the full Google Drawing

Each star represents something different, we can call them my “markers” for now.  White tells you who the picture is of, red tells you when they were President.  Blue could provide a link to a Google Doc where I answer some of those questions above.  Which as you can tell, I didn’t really do.  My goal is to just show WHAT can be done.  Students can find pictures of landscape from that time and create a “marker” that will send you to that link.

Here is my workflow

  1. Create a new Google Drawing.  Google Drawing only works with chromebooks, laptops, and desktops – those still exist, right?
  2. Find pictures of the first four presidents via Google Images.  You can do this right from Google Drawing!  Select “Insert” and then “Search” the images that will pull images that are labeled as “for commercial reuse with modification” which is pretty specific.  This copyright means you can’t make money off of it, and you can alter the photo.  If you pull images from Google Images you can narrow down the search to just “labeled for reuse” – Check out our blog post here on how to do that!
  3. Create a collage using those images
  4. Start creating your markers.   These will provide the viewer more information.  Viewers will be able to click on various markers for pieces of information, rather than just reading a full length essay.  Within Google Drawing you have many options for shapes, which will become your “markers.”  Once students choose which shape they want to use as their markers – I went with stars – they can highlight one marker and either leave comments or link to outside sources.

For turn in purposes I always suggest a Google Form!  Click here to read our past blog post about this.

Stay tuned for our blog post next week where we can show you how to do this on iPads!





One thought on “The First Four

  1. Hi again, Molly:

    I love these ideas. I think Google Draw is something that is overlooked by many, but you’re showing it’s versatility and range of uses.

    Whenever I see a diagram with pockets of information, I usually think “ThingLink”. I know this blog has several posts on how to use Thinglink, so I wondered what this would look like using that as the tool to create your infographic? I think you can get all the same functionality (different colored links, access to different media, etc). You do lose the nice sharing options and connection to Google Drive that comes from using a Google-related document. I guess there’s always trade offs – I just like to keep the options open.

    I try to tell my students that if you’re thoughtful about what you add to these diagrams, they can become a nice review/study guide, when the dust has settled on what they just learned. That helps up the ante on the type of material I get in their projects.

    Thanks again for a simple, but powerful way to keep the learning going!

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