I was really mad at George Siemens, who made me do a concept map as part of the Connectivism class in 2008. Here was this whole class using and exploring all these tools, and for this one particular assignment we were forced to use a concept map.
Horror. I am a word person. I like language. I find lists perfectly acceptable. The closest I’d ever gotten to visual representation of words was a calendar grid, or possible drawing a line across my notes from one word to another to show relationship.
I don’t draw. When I was in high school my art teacher drew a picture of a brain, then another much smaller one next to it. He explained that this was a girl’s brain, and that’s why girls can’t do art. I’d like to say I got over that….
I could do layout on the high school paper, no problem. I did some visual stuff in college — lighting design was my thing. That kind of spatial and color stuff I could understand. Then came the web, and I made web pages.
But the concept map thing sent me into a panic. I forced myself to do it, of course, using that awful Cmap program. I began to realize it was mostly words, just arranged differently. I kept working with it. I did the assignment. When I was done, I vowed I’d never do it again.
So then Dr Couros assigns a Summary of Learning, as an “artefact”. My first thought was (gasp!) a concept map. What the hell had happened? I wanted to track my progress — surely this blog is already doing that. Surely a simple list or outline would summarize my learning. I could explain in words.
But no. The right tool for this job, if I’m going to do it, is a concept map. So I found something better than Cmap, and though I’m still not thrilled with MindMeister (ironically, because it doesn’t let me use enough images!), it will do fine.
Very brave, I thought. I hate vegetables, so I eat them. I detest exercise, so I go walk on a treadmill several times a week. And I can’t stand concept maps, so I’m doing one for my Summary of Learning.