How Teachers Can Use Mind Mapping For Their Students
The use of mind mapping to plan your lessons and create assignments for your class can enhance your method of teaching as well as your students’ learning experience.
Mind mapping is a technique that uses a diagram to map out information in a visual manner. There is a main category in the center of the map that branches out into subcategories in a hierarchical form.
With the use of certain keywords, symbols and colors, a mind map helps to relate information together by grouping concepts.
There are a variety of ways to introduce mind mapping into the classroom:
As a teacher, mind mapping can be of benefit to help you plan a day’s lessons more efficiently. It can also help you with planning your entire curriculum by sorting out your goals and objectives for the school year. You can share this curriculum mind map with your students so they too can keep track of the agenda, giving them an idea of what to expect from you and the class as a whole.
To help aid in the process of mind mapping, there is software available, known as iMindMap. It integrates programs on your computer, such as Microsoft Word and Excel, and online resources to develop and organize your plans.
At the end of the day or end of the school year, mind mapping can serve to be a useful tool for self-evaluation of your preparation and teaching techniques. In addition, you can ask students to self-evaluate themselves so they are aware of the areas that need improvement in terms of their approach to learning and studying.
When presenting new information to students, you can also utilize mind mapping to help them understand an overview of concepts before you teach and discuss the topic.
Mind mapping also allows students to efficiently brainstorm individually or as a group. This promotes active participation from students and offers a method to generate and share their ideas on paper as well as with one another as a group. At the same time, mind mapping teaches them to be autonomous thinkers.
In a way, mind mapping is a structural format to thinking outside the box.
You can get your students to become more engaged about a specific topic by formatting your handouts with mind mapping. The colors, images and emphasis on key phrases spark the thought process to approach a topic from a more creative point of view.
After a lesson, have your students create their own mind map individually or collectively to help you and your students assess how much they have learned. Furthermore, before an essay or oral presentation, students can use a mind map as well to organize ideas and gathered information.
Instead of the usual homework assignment, you can ask students to create their own color-coded mind map. Have them use colorful ribbons and bows to place emphasis on the most important parts of their individual mind maps. This is yet another way to keep students engaged. Mind mapping helps them employ both the rational and creative parts of their brain to instigate their critical thinking and research skills.
Moreover, those visual connections will help students to better preserve the connection of concepts into their long-term memory. Best of all, you and your students can always go back to your mind maps for a quick refresher of important concepts.
Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer from Southern California whose writing covers everything from business and marketing, to gaming and technology, to health and beauty. She also writes for HostPapa. As a mother of three, she always encourages her children to be as creative as possible when achieving their goals.