Mind Maps in the Elementary Classroom

Using Mind Maps in Elementary

I've been using MindMaple for many of my personal and professional organizational needs, and I wanted to see if my seven year old daughter could use the software to create a mind map.  I had her jot her thinking onto a story element graphic organizer.  I used a free one from Scholastic.  After discussing the book, Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, and completing the organizer, we opened MindMaple to begin working.

I have the full version ($9.99) for MindMaple on my desktop at home, but on my laptop I just installed the Lite version (free).   To complete this project, Riley used the Lite version.  The program was really easy for her to use.  At first, the topics and sub-topics were not formatting the way she wanted them to, so she simply pushed the back arrow and tried again.  In no time, she was navigating the software with ease. 

The toolbar is simple and easy to use!

What I liked best is that she kept wanting to add topics beyond what the original graphic organizer had required.  To extend this activity, we began discussing sub-topics she could include.  

We generated the following list of additional sub-topics:

  • other works by the same author
  • a personal connection to the story
  • her review (opinion) of the book

After extending the activity, Riley's new mind map looks like...

{click here to see her MindMap and to read more about this tech tool


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