Tag Clouds for the Classroom

While searching the Web for classroom ice breakers that tie into my daily lesson plan, I came across Nancy Wozniak’s blog, which contains a variety of topics dedicated to Web 2.0 for educators.  Nancy posted a discussion on using Tag Crowd as a classroom ice breaker.  Tag Crowd’s Website states that Tag Crowd is:

A web application for visualizing word frequencies in any user-supplied text by creating what is popularly known as a tag cloud or text cloud.

I decided to try it myself before I used it in the classroom.  I had a minor problem when trying to use the URL option to create a tag cloud, it produced a blank screen. But the copy and paste option worked fine. Here is a screen shot of my tag cloud.

I am definitely going to incorporate it into my lesson plan.   I plan to take it beyond using it as an ice breaker.  I will have my students create their own Word Press blogs, and then write a personal essay about themselves.  They will then post their essay and their tag clouds created with Tag Crowd on their blogs.

I’m currently teaching Business Management at Heritage College. The final project in the class is a business plan.  The students can then use their blogs as part of their Marketing strategy for their business plans.

My belief is that as potential small business owners I want to equip them with all the tools they need to be successful.  The integration of Web 2.0 technologies into mainstream business is a growing trend.  Utilizing a blog for target marketing on a grassroots level has proven to be an inexpensive and effective channel for small and large businesses.

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