What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Tagxedo is a website that lets kids explore words in a visual way. Its simple format makes it a great place to turn for fun virtual flash card creation, text analysis, or just playing around with words. Kids might want to get silly with it at first, putting in swear words, etc., but they'll get to the point eventually.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- presenting to others
Thinking & Reasoning
- part-whole relationships
- applying information
- collecting data
- making new creations
- conveying messages effectively
- using and applying technology
- digital creation
Engagement, Approach, Support
The instant results are very satisfying, and it's really fun to tinker around with shapes, fonts, and colors to perfect your tag cloud. Kids will love making these for friends!
While the learning here is generally surface-level, it's a non-linear way to present ideas, and kids can get very creative with the possibilities.
The 101 Ways to Use Tagxedo page is a little hard to navigate and loads slowly, but it does contain some quality ideas. There's a Quick Start guide for new users, a detailed FAQ, and specialized tutorials.
What's it about?
Tagxedo is a website that allows users to create word clouds from any text. What's a word cloud? It's a cloud made of words, of course. You input any words or text blocks into Tagxedo's interface, choose a shape and font, and the result is a cloud-like visual interpretation, with words appropriately sized to show their frequency in the text. The site can pull text from a user's Twitter account, blog, or any URL they type in, as well as custom words. Shapes include a heart, star, and apple, and there's a wide selection of fonts to choose from as well.
Is it any good?
Kids will love making customized word clouds, and Tagxedo certainly makes it easy to create a slick-looking image in just a few minutes. It seems basic at first, but there are a handful of ways to make the site a valuable learning tool (some of which are outlined in "101 Ways to Use Tagxedo," a helpful slideshow. The interface is extremely easy to manipulate and even younger kids should be able to play around with it.
Families can talk about...
Have kids think of as many words as they can that begin with a letter, then create a series of alphabet-shaped clouds.
Create a family word cloud after dinner, adding words that describe what you do best together and what makes you happy.
Have kids type in the words of a favorite poem or short story and select a shape that relates to the story.