Common Sense Review
Updated May 2013

Mindomo

Visualize thoughts, make mind maps with simple site for complex ideas
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Common Sense Rating 3
  • Mindomo's home page before login.
  • The Help menu is detailed and visual, just like Mindomo itself.
  • You can bookmark items online that you'd like to use later in a mind map.
  • Mindomo Classroom offers ideas for mind map use during school time.
  • Sometimes the interface looks complicated, but it's not so bad once you get started.
Pros
Very versatile; Mindomo can be used for collaboration, organization, or plain old idea-brainstorming.
Cons
The site isn't designed with only kids in mind; sometimes the help language is clunky, and the dashboard can be overwhelming at first.
Bottom Line
Even though the site isn't made for kids, Mindomo can help kids and teens to think visually and organize their ideas.
Polly Conway
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 3
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 3

Once kids get the gist of Mindomo, they can have fun organizing information and ideas. However, creating a mind map takes a lot of serious thought, and kids will have to dig deep to make connections and put together a dense tree.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 3

Through mind-mapping, kids will gain organizational skills that they can use throughout their lives. Mindomo can also be a great tool for teaching kids how to collaborate on larger projects, whether at school or at home.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 3

Although not the most kid-friendly, help is easy to find on the site. FAQs and the Help tab cover the basics as well as conceptual information that's nice to review.

About our ratings and privacy evaluation.
How Can Teachers Use It?

You don't have to have a teacher subscription to use Mindomo in the classroom, but it may help you stay organized. Mindomo Classroom offers a handful of ideas for you to use with students, ranging from basic organization to group debate; they can be found in the Exercises section of the site. A collaborative map could ask for responses from an open-ended question. A literature-based exercise might ask kids to make a characterization map about a character from a book. A science- or math-related map could ask students to break down complex concepts into parts, or to look at connections between concepts.

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What's It Like?

Mindomo allows users to create "mind maps," tree-like diagrams that visually represent information and ideas. Kids can use it to organize information, create presentations, or collaborate on projects. While the concept can get challenging, the main idea is simple: Kids create a main topic bubble, then add subtopics (attached by a single line) and so on, until they're done. They can share maps through email, or allow others to contribute by adding them as editors.

Teachers can sign up for Mindomo with an email and password; you'll choose a payment plan depending on how many users you'd like on your account and how much storage you need. Once logged in, simply hit Create to start a map. You'll start with a single topic bubble, then drag-and-drop branches containing subtopics, and further sub-subtopics from there. Each bubble can be formatted to include text, images, or video content.

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Is It Good For Learning?

Mindomo's organization may be tricky for younger kids, and there isn't much kid-friendly help (although the "What is Mind-Mapping" section provides a pretty clear explanation). However, for kids and teens that are ready, Mindomo can be a good way to organize concepts and present ideas for both school and personal projects. Kids can make discoveries, and learn how to present concepts clearly, by making diagrams that break ideas down into parts.

Teens will be able to see the way their thoughts branch out, and can take a critical look at their own mind maps as well as the maps of others. The site can be good for helping kids reflect on their own thinking and creativity. They'll figure out how to visually represent ideas and patterns clearly. In turn, this can help kids to become better communicators in general. Mindomo also works as a brainstorming tool and as a way to present concepts; kids can learn about collaboration as they work together on group projects.

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