Thing #14

Go with the Flow

Who loves flowcharts? They can make concepts easy to grasp and solutions easy to find. When describing complex relationships or presenting a variety of choices and outcomes, they're wonderful at keeping important points from getting lost in translation.

Mind maps (an offshoot of the same idea) are similarly useful, though I think they work better for the creator than the reader. They're good at uncovering the relationships between multiple ideas and are not restricted to linear concepts like time and work flow.

So, here are some web-based tools that suitable for educational purposes.

Gliffy (flowchart) (mind map) (flowchart)

mindmeister (mind map)

Discovery Exercise:
  • Choose at least two of the above (one flowchart, one mind map) and set up an account.
    • Note that will have you request an invitation which should arrive within the day.
  • Explore the differences between mind maps and flowcharts, and consider using (or at least testing) one of these tools with a real project that you may have coming up.
  • Describe the tools you chose and why you chose them on your blog. Discuss how you might use these tools in your future classroom.

(originally posted on Explore...Discover...Play: Learning 2.1 and used here under a Creative Commons license)