Friday, August 3, 2012
#edchat #edtech #vitalcpd I recently decided to get creative with my resume and turn it into an infographic. While putting it together, it occurred to me that it could be fun to have students create their own version of an infographic resume at the beginning of the year to share information about themselves with the class as a cool new ice breaker or get-to-know-you activity. You could also assess students by having them put together infographics on whatever topic they’ve been studying!
If you’re interested in creating infographics, check out some of these great online resources:
There are lots of great, free tools online that can help students create their infographics, and they can use software on the computer as well. In fact, after experimenting with creating an infographic online, I decided to put mine together using MS Publisher just because it gave me the freedom I needed to make things look the way I wanted.
(Of course, as always, be sure to check into the privacy settings for any site you use, especially if you’re asking students to create infographics about their lives.)
Easel.ly – This is a great free website that lets you create infographics online. It has a variety of great templates (one of which inspired my infographic resume) as well as cool backgrounds and clipart. Its one big limitation that sent me running to MS Publisher is that you can’t control your page size. It gives you three orientations (portrait, landscape, and mobile), but you can’t customize it more than that. I quickly ran out of room, so that was a deal breaker for my purposes, but it may work for yours!
Infogr.am – Similar to Easel.ly, Infogr.am also lets you make your own infographics. It too has a few templates for you to choose from, but unlike Easel.ly, it will let you customize your page size a bit more (width only, 300-700px). It will also let you create interactive charts, including a fun animated graph that’s represented by frogs eating flies.
Piktochart – This site has a few free templates you can use to create your own infographic, and lots more that you can pay for with a monthly subscription. There’s also the option for student accounts. This one has lots of cool features, but many you have to pay for. The free account also only lets you upload 5 images, and you’re stuck with the default page size unless you decide to pay.
Tableau – This is a free, downloadable program that lets you create interactive data visualizations that you can embed into a website or share with others. Students could graph relevant data and add their visualizations into their infographic.
Word Clouds – Wordle & Tagxedo are still my 2 favorite word cloud makers. Check out my earlier blog post on these! (For additional ways to use word clouds in the classroom, read the blog post I wrote for Poudre School District.)
Pixlr – When creating infographics, you often have to edit images/clip art that you find –to remove white backgrounds, change colors, etc. Pixlr is by far my favorite online image editing site. It’s free to use, similar to Photoshop in many ways, and best of all, you don’t have to create an account to use it or to save your edited images to the computer!
Thinglink – This is a great website if you want your students to take things one step further. They can upload their infographic to this site, then tag it with additional content. This will basically create a “hot spot” anywhere on the image that links to additional information online. They can link to more pictures, files via Dropbox, videos, etc. When a viewer “mouses” over the hot spot, they can see additional information and click to get to the linked site.
There are also several sites that allow you to create an infographic based on your social networking profile(s) – Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, etc. If that’s something that interests you, check out re.vu, vizualize.me, visual.ly, and Vizify. Kinzaa is another one worth checking out if you want to build your own infographic resume. It has you fill in your work history, traits, skills, etc., then creates the infographic for you.
If you know of any other great resources for building infographics, please comment with your ideas!