Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Get thee to Wordle


I love being a SAHM, really I do, but sometimes I read a book or editorial, I find a new website or get caught up in a news story that makes me ache to be back in a classroom with high school students. I teach a fourth grade religious education class at my church and that gives me a little weekly fix of lesson planning and creativity, and of course I discuss those books, editorials, websites, and stories that intrigue me with family and friends, but it's not the same. Recently, I began playing around on Wordle (http://www.wordle.net/) and my brain started buzzing with classroom applications. It almost makes me want to turn in my jeans and minivan keys for heels and a piece of chalk. Wordle is an online tool or toy, depending on how you look at it, that generates "word clouds" from text that you provide. Greater prominence is generally assigned to words that appear with more frequency in the text. It was created by Jonathan Feinberg, a software engineer at IBM Research, and can be fairly addictive. Oh, the things I could do with Romeo and Juliet and Wordle! Or vocabulary words and Wordle! Or test reviews and Wordle! Someday I'll get back to that. In the meantime, I've got my eyes on my daughter and son's spelling word lists...

5 comments:

Terry said...

Oh, that's a great idea! I have a first grader who gets words to learn every couple days. This would be so much more fun than word cards.

Steven at Book Dads said...

I've tried this on our blog. It returned some very strange words that I couldn't imagine were actually there.

caribookscoops said...

Oh Christine I can totally relate to you wanting to go back the classroom. I taught middle school history for 5 years. I have dreams at night about really awesome lesson plans and then I wake up and realize I don't have a classroom. I am taking care of my girls right now and while I love it and miss the classroom.

Wordle sounds like something I would definitely use. I will have to look at it some more, I may be able to use it with my older daughter or file it away for future use.

taralazar said...

Very cool website! Thanks for sharing!

Becky said...

It is really fun, isn't it? I think there are lots of possibilities for stuff you can do with this. I freaked out about it on my blog: http://www.suburbanmatron.com/2008/07/fun-toy.html

I would love to see some postcards made from Wordles.