The Concept Map Challenge task asks students to create a concept map that demonstrates their understanding of the connections among ideas. Here are some tips for making the most of this activity:

  • Assess prior knowledge. Have students complete the Challenge before watching the movie to assess prior knowledge of the topic. Observe as they complete the Concept Map task, and adjust your teaching to their needs accordingly.
  • Watch the movie first. Students watch the BrainPOP movie before completing the associated Challenge. In this way, the Challenge can serve as an assessment of what they learned about the topic.
  • Play Sortify. If the topic includes a Sortify game, encourage students to play the game before doing the Challenge. Sortify requires students to categorize information, a similar skill used for concept mapping.
  • Use as a springboard for discussion. Challenge tasks are intended to encourage students to think holistically and consider how concepts within a topic are interrelated. Have a class discussion by asking the following about the Concept Map task: Why do you think these ideas are in the Challenge. What does this concept map have to do with what you’re studying? What strategies did you use when deciding on which ideas to connect in the concept map? Which concept did you find most challenging to place and why? Which was easiest to place and why?
  • Use as a cooperative learning activity. Invite students to work collaboratively with a partner or group and explain to each other their thinking as they select where to place each idea.
  • Create an offline Concept Map Challenge task. Have small groups create an offline Concept Map Challenge task based on the same topic. First, have them watch the movie. Next, they select a set of ideas not featured in the Challenge task and write them in a list on a sheet of paper.  Then have groups swap lists and create a Concept Map based on the list they received. Remind them of the different types of concept maps, such as spider map, vocabulary map, cyclical relationship map, etc.  
Filed as:  3-5, 6-8, 9-12