Mindmap of Communication using Web 2.0


There has been a great deal of discussion about what students need to learn for their futures. I recently learned of a quote from John Dewey (1859-1952), the education reformer, that summarizes it well: “If we teach today as we taught yesterday, we rob our children of tomorrow.”

I put the above mindmap together (see link) in a manner as to understand the variety of ways in which we continue to do the good work of ‘reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic’, just as we did during Dewey’s time, just as we do now, and just as we will always need to do. What I tried to express in this mindmap, however, is the variety of options in which we can now communicate, and therefore, demonstrate understanding. Today’s students have many more modes of sharing information and demonstrating knowledge and today’s teachers have the opportunity, challenge, and responsibility to use these various modes in order to prepare our students for their future.

Many of the tools mentioned ways in which I’ve had students research and share their ideas. I often use blogging and tools like Prezi or Voicethread to have students share and demonstrate their learning. For example, I’ve used polling to gather group information, but then had students share ideas through online discussions. Backchanneling can allow students to get involved in the group discussion or comment on a movie so everyone gets involved. I recently had students use infographics to present information about the technology company which they have been researching.

There are such a variety of ways to use Web 2.0 tools to help students communicate. The power of these tools is that they provide students with audience and relevance, as well as inclusion. Those students who would normally sit back in a class discussion are now not only given the opportunity but the impetus to get involved. This is powerful and changes the dynamics of the classroom. Who wouldn’t want to get onboard?


Mindmap of Web 2.0 Tools


Web 2.0 Tools

I’ve published my mindmap of the vision of Web 2.0 Tools which I have for students today. The landscape of the world has changed radically and it would only be inevitable to change the classroom. The access to Web 2.0 tools means that today’s student can be more than consumers of information, but also the architects of the Web 2 World. There are opportunities to create media in the form of text, image, video, and infographics. There are ways to share with others and collaborate on projects. There are opportunities to publish work and be recognized.

With these come great challenges. Students need the guidance to understand the barrage of data in order to be discriminating of the sources of information and the bias around the information they receive. They need to know how to give credit to others just as they would wish to receive credit for their work. They need to learn how to organize the great amounts of information they receive and manage and aggregate data.

Everything technological is a double-edged sword. With great access to fascinating information come new challenges in managing and wisely dealing with resources. Ah, what interesting times we live in!