Have you ever seen or made a Wordle? Wordles produce a free-form graphic of the words you use. The creators of Wordle call it a "word cloud". Additionally some use it as a means of text analysis. There's even a Wordle users forum, useful for solving problems such as coloring, printing, saving, or editing a Wordle. The forum goes beyond the site's FAQ to resolve such issues for more advanced uses.
I love these suggestions from Tagxedo (but they would also work with Wordle or Tagul) for Early Childhood usage:
- Turn a familiar song into a Tagxedo
- Ask child to recognize words (and provide ample hints)
- He/she will soon get it and eager to guess the words
- Ask him/her to sing it out loud while pointing at the words
- Build confidence and interest in words
- Fun game to play
- Ask child his favorite songs to play the game with
- My sample uses those Early Childhood suggestions.
- I saved the words in a Word document before inserting them in the Create page.
- "Load" produces a menu, but the Silverlight box kept coming insistently onto the Enter Text box. Finally I just copied the words from my Word document, then put my cursor -- such an apt name! -- in the Enter Text box, clicked both Control and V to paste them into the box. (So often when something refuses to Paste I find using Control/V works around that problem.)
- Clicked Submit.
- On Layout Options I chose Hard Boundary as it made the shape more obvious; White Friendly so the Tagxedo format would show up here; then Accept.
- Clicked the arrow next to Shape to see a wide assortment of simple shapes.
- I selected Apple.
If you create or maintain a website and would like a "rollover" word cloud for websites, Tagul is worth exploring. You can get various fonts, colors, and even a few shapes. Tagul has a blog to keep you aware of new developments, FAQ section, and a Forum for its users. Personally I prefer the simplest of rollovers to get to a specific page within a website, but a shaped word cloud on your homepage may be something you want to spice up a plain site.
Storytelling is adaptable to almost any theme and talks directly to your audience. LoiS has a wide variety of existing programs or can create one just for you. A sampling can be found at Programs A to Z .
Call 248-625-5848 or email LoiS-sez@LoiS-sez for more information.