The History of Infographics
The fact mentioned in the brief history of infographics by Anders Ross article (InfoGraphic Designs: Overview, Examples, and Best Practices) that early humans created the very first type of graphical information attracted my attention. Thanks to those pieces of art in the caves, we know so much more about human life during that period. People didn’t have any writing skills, but they could use drawing to tell a story. It’s incredible how powerful visual information can be – psychologists can define the condition of our mental health by analyzing our drawings. Humans at the very early developing stage such as childhood are mostly learning from images. It is amazing how much non-verbal communication happens between a baby and a mom by expressing feelings, emotions or requests by mimics.
Infographics are traditionally viewed as visual elements such as signs, charts, maps, or diagrams that aid comprehension of given text-based content (Anders Ross)
Even more fascinating facts about infographics history can be found in this TED Talk by Tommy McCall.
I had some design experience before, such as creating yearbook pages using Photoshop and I can tell that it was easy to learn how to use the tools. However, once I got to the creation of the actual design stage, I realized that I lack experimenting in my design process – as the result the designs I came up with were very similar. Later, I have assigned this job to my students and introduced the most important tools and features of the Photoshop. Students didn’t get to see many examples of possible designs so they began experimenting with passion! Oh… I can’t even tell how much I love this process! I saw so many more design options, just because students weren’t afraid to experiment and their surrounding world was different from mine. Success! Later I got an amazing opportunity to participate in a workshop led by Keri-Lee Beasley at one conference. She explained some simple ways of how to see the various elements around us and use them in the design process. We were looking for elements, lines, repetitions, colors, sizes, angles, etc. This was a really great experience. We were experimenting with all of these elements in order to make our own infographics.
I evaluate my design skills very carefully. From time to time I have to create my own infographics such as posters, name tags, etc. Many times Canva was my lifesaver.
I’ve made this infographic for a really important purpose. I was thinking about the research unit, which I’m teaching my students from grades 4&5 every school year. This resource will be shared with the students as a PDF file, which contains all the necessary links to the online resources. The purpose of this infographic is to make a research process easier to understand for students. I strongly believe that this visual resource will improve both teaching and learning process.
Icons and Sequence
I’ve emphasized the essential steps of online research and described them using images. My idea was to use as little text as possible and explain the concept by using images and icons. Pictures can say more than words. Canva is a really great tool for that. I could find all the necessary icons and elements in it. I personally like a certain sequence of any online resource which makes navigation easier, therefore, I organized the infographic as a list of steps to follow in order to make effective online research. I also thought that the combination and set of colours is essential in any design and this time I would like to say compliments to canva.com again, because it pulls out/generates all the colours already used in the design which allows to easily pick similar colours and maintain integrity of the design.
I love creating infographics, since the process itself is fun, especially once the final result is ready and it is pleasant to your eyes. Using Canva, I’ve made some of my other posters and I like using my own designs because it allows me to add more relevant details, which other posters don’t contain.
My youngest students love exploring icons, so for their Chromebook labels, I’ve created special name labels earlier. I’ve added all the relevant icons for any tool navigation. Students can explore the labels and find the icons of existing digital tools and learn more about them with teacher. You can see an example of it. I made these labels for teaching students the icons of any digital tool. I think introducing icons is essential because many times we explain, that for example the Play button looks like a triangle, and it really looks the same on any digital tools. I believe, that this visual resource on their devices will attract students’ eyes and motivate them for further exploration.
As a teacher of early years age students, I can tell how powerful the visual resources are for students learning. Young students especially love visuals and I strongly believe that successful students’ learning will happen only in a visually well-prepared classroom fulfilled with many visual resources. Visuals engage and motivate students to learn.
Information is beautiful
And yes… Information is beautiful. Check this out! Even the scariest information can be beautiful on the well-designed infographic. I hope someday I will be able to create something similar 🙂
Do you like it as well?