For my final reflection in the Teaching, Learning, and Assessing in the Digital Era course I decided to put technology to a test. After much reading about concept mapping my interest in the uses of concept mapping in my own teaching/learning practice was rejuvenated. I had several complex, deep, ideas about creating a visual which would summarize my learning and show relationships between ideas. The reality of the time frame available to complete this task lead me to an experiment with technology. I used the free applet Wordle to create a map. I would refer to it as a word map rather than a concept map.
The way I "fed" information to this technology (Wordle) was to copy all of my blog entries for this class and paste them into the Wordle creator. The illustration above is the product of my experiment. I was curious to see how Wordle would summarize my learning. As I read about the mechanics behind Wordle I discovered that the "word map" is formed based the frequence of use of the words. As I examine the Wordle of my blog entries it reflects a summary of the most frequent terms about which I wrote.
Over the course of my research I found an interesting blog about how to use Wordle in classrooms: The Top Ten Ways to Use Wordle at School . I look forward to diving deeper into the resources listed for this week on concept mapping when I have more time to explore and experiment with concept maps