5 Activity Examples With the Graphic Organizer

Equipping You to Author Content for Teaching and Learning in Virtual Reality

(1st-person view of a virtual marker in front of a virtual whiteboard)


Below are five examples of activities that utilize the Graphic Organizer. Each three-step example can be used as the core activity for a lesson in VR!

Activity 1: Cause-and-Effect Mapping

Levels and Learning Objectives:

Cause-and-effect mapping works well for clarification, checking comprehension, explaining processes, and organizing information.  This activity is effective for learners at any language level from A1-C2.

TPACK for Example Activity 1:

Content Knowledge - Kitchen vocabulary, language related to cause and effect

Technological Knowledge -  VR Locations, VR Graphic Organizer, VR Object Interactions, VR Activated Prompt

Pedagogical Knowledge - Exploring real experiences that can be visualized or conducted in the classroom with realia, powerful scaffolding for communication

Lesson Objective*: Can describe basic activities or events that are happening at the time of speaking. Speaking, A2 (33)


  1. Use the Graphic Organizer to share the cause-and-effect map.

    (Two characters point at a blackboard labeled "Food  Cause  Effect"; "Egg" and "Fruit" are written in the Food column, and "Fry" and "Blend" are written in the Cause column)

    Students take different food items. Using food-related verbs, students prepare the food in teams. 

  2. Students work in teams to learn about cause and effect in the kitchen.

    (Three characters prepare food in a restaurant-style kitchen)

    Have students work at the kitchen island. Students push the activated prompt to receive a type of food. With partners, students collect the food. Teams write their food on the graphic organizer. Next, students choose a verb tile to place on the board in the Cause column. They then perform the action on the food (e.g. cutting an apple).

  3. Students complete the Effect column for each food interaction.

    (Two students gesture towards the blackboard; the words "Burned" and "Smoothie" are written in the Effect column)

    Have partners write the effects in the final column. Have students share their discoveries when finished.

    Tip: Clear the graphic organizer and have students repeat with different items.

    Extension: Have students choose one cause-and-effect action to write about. Have them share the writing on the class LMS or forum.


Activity 2: Mind Maps

Levels and Learning Objectives:

Mind maps work well to help learners organize information related to concepts and processes. This activity is useful to scaffold productive use of language. This activity is effective for learners at any language level from A1-C2.

TPACK for Example Activity 2:

Content Knowledge - Vocabulary for familiar places, activities

Technological Knowledge - VR Locations, VR Graphic Organizer

Pedagogical Knowledge - Using mind maps provides effective scaffolding to help English language learners explore and understand the connections between various concepts or ideas

Lesson Objective*: Can use a limited range of fixed expressions to describe objects, possessions, or products. Speaking, A2 (35)


  1. Map items in the shop by type.

    (Two characters are sorting items such as a radio and a rocket into columns labeled Travel, Home, and Toys)

    Have students work together to write the names of chosen store items in the related columns on the mind map.

  2. Map items to functions using can +verb.

    (The characters are drawing lines between the items and corresponding verbs; for instance, there are lines connecting "play" to "radio" and "rocket")

    Use the graphic organizer's tiles to present relevant verbs that describe how various items function. Have students place the tiles on the board. Use the marker to map the verbs to the relevant items. Verbs can be mapped to more than one item.

    Tip: Students can add more words by writing on the graphic organizer or using the student notepad located in the student backpack.

  3. Have students discuss items in the shop using can + verb.

    (In the shop, one character points at a suitcase while the other watches with his hands in the air)

    Have students work in pairs and mingle around the store. Students take turns describing an item to partners using can + verb. Encourage the students and model the verb form (e.g., "I can wear the bag. You can drink coffee from the pot. I can squeeze this duck!").

    Extension: Have students describe items that they have in a selfie video. Have students share their videos via the class LMS and forum. Encourage students to leave comments on the videos.


Activity 3: Compare and Contrast

Levels and Learning Objectives:

Compare-and-contrast organizers help learners differentiate information by relevant characteristics and works to improve flexible use of language. Compare-and-contrast organizers can be used with all levels of language ability from A1-C2.

TPACK for Example Activity 3:

Content Knowledge - Vocabulary for weather, prices, and traveling; language for comparing and contrasting

Technological Knowledge - VR Locations, VR Nested Prompt, VR Graphic Organizer

Pedagogical Knowledge - Comparing and contrasting information can help learners think critically about similarities and differences, improving their ability to communicate details about thoughts, ideas, and opinions.

Lesson Objective*: Can compare and contrast alternatives about what to do, where to go, etc. Speaking, B1+ (53)


  1. Review travel destinations.

    (A whiteboard displays information about a trip to the Eiffel Tower, such as location, weather, and cost; beside it is a spinner with the names of destinations)

    Arrange students into pairs or groups. Rally to the World Map. Have students name the famous locations in the icons. Use the Nested Prompt to share information about the locations, including the cost of traveling to the area. Have students pull the spinner lever until all 8 destinations have been reviewed.

  2. Compare and contrast the destinations.

    (Two characters gesture at a whiteboard with travel destinations such as the Taj Mahal and the Statue of liberty labeled with descriptive words like "Ancient" and "Modern")

    Have pairs organize the locations into type. Then compare and contrast the different destinations. Allow students to return to the nested prompt to review information as necessary.

    Tip: Add additional images of destinations using the Image Placeable tool.

  3. Plan your journey to a new destination.

    (Two student characters speak with an airport employee character at a check-in counter)

    Have pairs consider all the information about the destinations. In pairs or teams, students must come to a consensus about where to travel. After the discussion, have teams share their choices and the reasons for their decision.

    Extension: Have students role-play checking in for their flight at the check-in counter. Have students summarize their choices on the class LMS or forum as homework.


Activity 4: Concept Map

Levels and Learning Objectives:

Concept maps work well to help explore concessions between various concepts and can help learners more fluently describe complex related ideas. This activity is effective for learners at any language level from A1-C2.

TPACK for Example Activity 4

Content Knowledge -


Technological Knowledge - 


Pedagogical Knowledge - 

Concept maps are a valuable way to integrate the four skills in learning. They promote exploration of concepts through speaking and listening as students describe concepts, through reading as students organize and understand related concepts, and through writing as students share and document relationships.

Lesson Objective*: Can encourage members of a group to build on one another’s information and ideas to come up with a concept Speaking, B2+ (69)


  1. Organize concepts about animals in the zoo.

    (A blank whiteboard is labeled with four columns: "Animal," "Plant," "Geography," and "Climate;" below are tiles with words and phrases such as "shark," "in the cold arctic," and "elephant")

    Rally students to the graphic organizer. Have them work in pairs or teams to organize the concept tiles into columns. Have students write and add additional details on the board, or on a note from the student notepad placed near the board.

  2. Create a concept map for a new animal.

    (Two characters examine the whiteboard, which now has the tiles in the appropriate columns)

    Have pairs choose an animal that is not in the zoo. Use the Image Placeable to place an image of the animal in the Zoo. Create a White Board for each group of students. Have them create a concept map with information about their selected animal on their white boards.

    Tip: You can create two or more whiteboards for teams to help them organize their concept maps. In VR, you have unlimited whiteboards for student work.

  3. Students share concept maps in a jigsaw activity.

    (Two students point at a whiteboard with the word "Squirrel" connected by lines to relevant adjectives such as "fluffy" and "small")

    Create new pairs. Have students take turns presenting the animal concept maps using the concept map whiteboards.

    Extension: Have students take a picture of the concept map white boards using the student camera. Ask them to upload the pictures on the class LMS or forum with a summary paragraph.


Activity 5: Character Map

Levels and Learning Objectives:

Character maps help learners improve their fluency and level of detail when describing real or imaginary people. This activity is effective for learners at any language level from A1-C2.

TPACK for Example Activity 5:

Content Knowledge - Vocabulary related to characteristics of personality

Technological Knowledge - VR Locations, VR Prompt Cards, VR Graphic Organizer

Pedagogical Knowledge - Sharing extended details encourages the use of various lexical families, improving flexibility and fluency with language used in multiple contexts

Lesson Objective*: Can describe people's personality and emotions in some detail. Speaking, B2 (59)


  1. Review the characteristics to be mapped.

    (1st-person view of a hand holding a card with "Dracula" written on it)

    Arrange students in pairs or teams. Explain that each person will have a chance to role play a character. During the role play, they share information that helps others identify their personality. The first team to role play sits in the interview location. One student is the host. Partners take a card to reveal the character they will role play.

  2. Create a characteristic map with partners.

    (1st-person view of a marker in front of a whiteboard with columns labeled "Name," "Personality Trait 1," "Personality Trait 2", and "Supporting Details")

    The remaining students will listen as the characters describe themselves. Listening students will write the name of each character and organize the personality traits. After the interview, students write supporting details for their choices.

    Tip: Have students use the student notepad to make bullet-point notes about supporting details. Students can place their notes on the whiteboard.

  3. Share the character maps.

    (Two characters stand if front of the whiteboard, which now has rows such as "Dracula, mischievous, energetic, teeth")

    After all students have a chance to role play a character, ask them to review the maps. Have each student take turns using the character map to share one character, describing their personality traits and providing supporting details.

    Extension: Have students choose one of their favorite characters and create a character map to share on the class LMS or forum.