activate and engage students during all stages of the learning process
Description: Using concept
mapping, students construct a model for organizing and integrating the
information that they are learning. Concept mapping can be use prior to an
assignment as a brainstorming activity, during an assignment as an organizing
strategy, or as a post-assessment activity.
- Choose a key word or topic related to a unit of study.
- Write the word on an overhead transparency or on a sheet of chart paper.
- Ask students to think of as many words and ideas as they can that relate
to the focal word.
- Write the words on a map in clusters or categories.
- Have the students suggest labels for the categories and write them on the
- If there are any key vocabulary words that are important to the
comprehension of a reading assignment and students do not mention them, add
them to the map with a red marker or pen.
- Discussion of the concept map is the most important part of the lesson.
This helps students become aware of their current thinking and helps them to
see relationships between words and ideas.
- After the reading assignment, or as the unit progresses, new words and
categories can be added to the map. Use different colors of ink to show that
this information was not known prior to the reading or unit of study.
Lipton, L., & Wellman, B. (1998). Patterns and practices in the
learning-focused classroom. Guilford, Vermont: Pathways Publishing.
Concept Map for Microsoft Office
from Instructional Strategies for
Guilford County Schools TF, 2002
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