Our creative team wanted to share a few considerations to bear in mind when designing in class material, specifically handouts.
Our Apples believe that the following pointers will help with the navigation, impact and effective of your In-class handouts.
A. Clear aims Having a clear set of aims at the start of activity helps the teacher with the direction of the lesson and helps the student to understand what the activity/worksheet will involve. These could be curriculum specific, or teacher generated to fit in with their own lesson planning.
B. Title hierarchy A clear title and numbering makes the handout quick to recognize and reference. A clear hierarchy of titles, subtitles and headings can help separate the information into sections, helping the reader navigate through the handout. A combination of the aforementioned can be used to great effect within handouts and in-class material.
C. Detailed and attractive illustrations Illustrations can help add tone and style to classroom material. It’s important artwork is relevant, age appropriate and marries with the rest of the information being covered. Visually, if used correctly, artwork and photos can say more than any text can. Combining artwork with text, in the form of infographics and diagrams, can really help with meeting the various learning styles within the demographic of the reader.
D. Clear and striking photos Photographs can help students relate to ‘real’ subject matter and help elicit learning. Photos should be chosen carefully, as well as initial impact, it’s important they enhance and the support any accompanying text. It’s better to have a select few, well chosen images - less is definitely more.
E. Easily marked way points Way points help to dictate the direction and pace of the handout and assists the teacher and students navigate through the information. Clear sections can act as natural breaks allowing the teacher expand further on specific information covered, encourage in-class interaction and/or help drive home a specific point.
F. Further study box and extension ideas. Boxes can be used to house links to extra material, be that; online material, extended questions for quick finishers, or links to additional handouts and activity sheets. It helps to increase the amount of information which a teacher can cover within the handout, allowing students to potentially use the handout for homework, or revision.
G. External links These links could be for; re-life examples of information and theories covered, extra material, or extended learning. The use of external links can help make the learning experience more rounded and also allow students to continue their learning at their pace, or in homework time.
H. Guidance notes Notes can also be provided separately, or on the rear of the handout. These notes are to help the teacher and can include; answers, questions and interactions to instigate, curriculum markers, key vocabulary and grammar, and much more.
We hope you find these layout notes useful and helps you on your journey to becoming a handout master. If you have any questions or need design help with your Front Of Class (FOC) material then drop us a message or an email.