Unit 2- Story Maps

What type of learners benefit from story maps?

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At the end of this unit, you will be able to:

  • State what type and learners can benefit from story maps and propose reasons why (placing a special emphasis on students with learning and reading disabilities).


  • All students can benefit from the use of story maps. As demonstrated in Unit 1, story maps can be modified for virtually any grade and ability level. Moreover, they can also be modified across content areas (you will learn more about this is Unit 3).
  • According to T. Boulineau's 2004 research findings, 60-80% of students with learning disabilities exhibit deficits in reading. In addition, the amount of students with learning disabilities are stated to be one of the fastest growing areas within education. There is obviously a need for more effective reading comprehension teaching strategies in elementary education. Each student, whether he or her has learning disabilities or not, possesses individual learning preferences. The more strategies a teacher has up his or her sleeve, the more likely they will be able to modify their teaching to better access each student's needs.
  • Story mapping is one such strategy that has been proven in multiple studies to assist students with reading comprehension.
  • In his 2010 study, N. Isikndogan states that story maps help students distinguish between significant and insignificant information, actively participate in reading, transfer information into long term memory, activate prior knowledge, and make predictions.

Learning Activities

  1. Read the following synopsis of T. Boulineau's 2004 article, Use of Story-Mapping to Increase the Story Grammar Text Comprehension of Elementary Students with Learning Disibilities. Unit 2- Article 1
  2. Read the following summary of C. Stagliano'd 2009 article, The Effects of Story-Mapping Procedure to Improve the Comprehension Skills of Expository Text Passages for Elementary Students with Learning Disabilities. Unit 2- Article 2
  3. Read the following article and write your own synapses.http://www.academia.edu/1321844/Investigation_of_the_Effectiveness_of_the_Story-Map_Method_on_Reading_Comprehension_Skills_among_Students_with_Mental_Retardation
  4. Follow up these readings with your own research. This step is optional but there are many great resources regarding using story maps to boost reading comprehension in students with various learning disabilities and I encourage you to look around!


Write a journal reflection on what you have learned this unit regarding story maps helping children with learning disabilities. Refer back to the three articles provided in the learning activities section.

  1. After analyzing the studies and readings in the learning activities section, why do you think children with learning disabilities benefit so much from the use of story maps?
  2. In your education and/or profession, have you had any previous experiences with students who's reading comprehension improved from using story maps? If so, describe the occurrence and how it relates to this unit's readings.
  3. If you have done more your own research, aside from the articles provided, please appropriately cite the resources used in APA format.

Upload your reflection here to share with your fellow classmates: Creating Talk:Unit 2- Story Maps

What's next?

Go to:

Unit 3- Story Maps

Return to:

Unit 1- Story Maps

Using Story Maps in Elementary Classrooms