Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Best K-12 Visualization Blog On the Web Made the Edublog Awards' 2006 Finalists, And I Couldn't Be Happier

"Quiet Indoor Voices," by DeepEllen

One of my original reasons for creating Think In Pictures was to try to link up the topics of education and visualization. The educational blogging community is very tight-knit a community and does not seem to have as strong a connection to outside influences regarding how to promote visual learning as they do in other areas. My ideas for this blog have evolved considerably in the seven months this blog has been online, and I have moved from working in K-12 curriculum design to adult curriculum design and from the graphics side back to an emphasis on writing, so that early emphasis may be less apparent than it once was. But my primary goal of thinking about visuals in an eclectic way has persisted throughout that time, and has influenced my other creative work as well, in ways I will be able to describe someday if things go as planned.

Math & Mondrian project, photo by Bisse

Visual schedule for autistic children by MNicoleM

If you like thinking outside the box on visualization with people who don't bother to use ridiculous terms like "thinking outside the box," you should keep up with the Classroom Displays blog. It's one of those sites that can help graphic and information designers out of a rut and provide some grassroots inspiration. Education bloggers recently named it one of the top four "audio and/or visual" blogs currently online in the 2006 Edublog Awards. To my mind, the fact that Edublogs decided that a joint category for podcasts and images was the way to go is the best sign that a blog like Think In Pictures, as it was originally conceived, is still a good idea.

I have never had a real or virtual conversation with the blogger behind the Classroom Displays blog, but I know from her sourcing that Linda Hartley works overtime to get good work up on her blog. She is a heavy Flickr user, organizing submissions through a Classroom Displays Flickr pool and running a related wiki to boot, and is always scouring Flickr for good contributors. The fact that she holds a degree in Learning, Technology and Research and chose to investigate displays made of construction paper and crayons is an inspiring example of where you can end up when you think creatively and openly about visualization.

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