Do Flowcharts get you excited…or give you a rash?
I’ve always thought flowcharts had a tendency to get a bit messy – or maybe that’s just my OCD kicking in, trying to straighten out all those little lines and bubbles! At any rate, kids LOVE them, and that’s what matters.
My special knack for condensing large amounts of information to just one or two pages has finally paid off. With a little help from Gliffy.com, I’ve created a flowchart that lets readers answer simple questions about their book to determine what possible genre it falls into. (This was always tricky to communicate as a librarian, to students who just wanted a good book.)
Using this little map, begin by classifying your book as either True or Not True, and follow the arrows from there! I’ve also included a more basic (and symmetrical) flowchart for those of us who just need a gentle nudge in the right genre direction…
These visual aids are wonderful to introduce the idea of genre, and to spark interest in categories of literature that might have gone unnoticed. Be sure to point out the similarities in story elements, and the way that many genres overlap or share characteristics. For instance, a realistic fiction book could also be a mystery, or an adventure story. Then again, that same mystery or adventure set in the past could classify it as historical fiction!
Now get that stack of books out and see what genres you uncover!