I’m currently big on Graphic Organisers. It’s the way that graphic organisers make it easier for children to articulate their understanding that I particularly like. But also, it’s the way that a really good graphic organiser lends itself to a multitude of educational requirements. The Freyer model (sometimes called the Freyer diagram) is one such graphic organiser.
The Freyer model is most commonly used as an English teaching tool to support the learning of vocabulary. The target word is written in the centre of the organiser, with children then populating the remaining sections to explore their understanding of the word. This is a hugely popular and very successful way of exploring vocabulary, with children’s responses to the ‘Non-examples’ cell often revealing considerable depth of understanding.
Beyond teaching and exploring vocabulary, there are other ways that the Freyer model can be used to teach English. For example, the Freyer model can be used to explore grammatical terms (see below).
Genre and poetic form can also be explored through the use of the Freyer model, as can literary features such as figurative writing techniques. It is a most flexible graphic organiser. And so, despite this being a website dedicated to the teaching of English, I must just make mention of other curriculum areas because the Freyer model can be used beyond the English lesson. The Freyer model can be used to classify and determine the qualities of the animal kingdoms, it can be used to determine the properties of 2d and 3d shapes, and processes such as evaporation.
It’s even possible to use the Freyer model in reverse by completing the four outer cells and then challenging children to completed the centre – what a great way to revise word meanings, and wider curriculum concepts.
As you can see, the Freyer model is a versatile graphic organiser that can be use across the curriculum.
The Freyer model is included in our Graphic Organiser pack available here. This pack includes 9 graphic organisers for use in English and the wider curriculum.
Rachel Clarke, Director – Primary English Education
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