To achieve Step 8, individuals will show that they can use mind mapping as a way of further developing their ideas.
In earlier steps, individuals explored what it means to use imagination in different situations and how to generate ideas. They have also explored how creativity can be useful in the context of both work and their wider lives. These next steps are about using different techniques to develop and refine more sophisticated ideas – starting with mind mapping.
The building blocks of this step are learning:
As we develop our creativity, we want to be able to not only generate lots of ideas but to start to link them and expand our thinking. Creative tools are methods that support creativity. That is, they support you to use your imagination, generate something new, and work towards an outcome.
A mind map is a simple creative tool to explore a particular idea:
Mind maps can be helpful for a few different reasons:
While mind maps are useful tools, they have their limitations because they only focus on one stimulus or idea and work out from there.
An alternative is concept maps which take different ideas and then look at connections between them. They might include labels on their linking lines to explain what the connection is between those ideas.
At other times it will be useful to think about flow charts, for how ideas link together, or circular diagrams if there is a cycle. Again, these help to add clarity about what the connection is between different ideas (these are explored more in Problem Solving Step 8).
Finally, while mind maps are helpful for identifying and organising ideas, they are only a starting point – eventually, we are likely to want to create other things to help explore those ideas further, like diagrams, charts or fuller explanations.
Mind-mapping is a simple and effective method to generate and link ideas. This creative tool can be applied to any topic or subject area and can be done on paper or digitally to help organise thoughts and spark ideas. Recording ideas in a visual and adaptable format helps us to be flexible in our thinking and explore as many ideas as possible. Mind maps may be used when working in groups to facilitate collaborative thinking, as well as being easy to share with others.
Whether working individually or with others, it’s important to stretch ourselves and consider multiple options when we develop ideas. Mind maps are a universal tool which can also be used to record ideas in a meeting or conversation. A flow chart is a similar tool and may be used to map out a process, such as a project timeline or user/customer experience.
Using a mind map is a helpful tool to help develop ideas. We might use this method for planning a trip, strategic thinking in sports or designing home improvements. A visual mind map is also a handy way to share and come up with ideas with others and makes it easier to bounce ideas off each other and record them in one place.
To best practise this step of Creativity, apply what you have learnt to a real-life situation. Choose one or more of the activities below, remind yourself of the key points and strategies in the step, and have a go!
To teach this step:
This is a step which can be regularly reinforced in the classroom setting, and which supports learning. For instance, it can be used regularly as a way for learners to reflect on what they already know about a new subject, or as a tool for gathering notes as they listen.
This step is best assessed through an exercise. This could be through setting the learners a question or stimulus challenge and asking them to gather and organise their ideas through a mind map. The question or stimulus should be something accessible and familiar for learners so that the assessment is focused on the mind map, not the underlying knowledge.
This assessment could be extended to include an observed group task (linked to Teamwork skills) where the focus would be on whether learners can use a mind map as a tool to support effective group working.
This step is relevant to everyone who will generate new ideas or connect ideas.
To build this step in the work environment, managers could:
There are plenty of opportunities for building this skill in the workplace:
For those already employed, this step can be assessed through observation and questioning. For instance:
During the recruitment process, this step could be assessed by:
We work with a wide range of organisations, who use the Skills Builder approach in lots of different settings – from youth clubs, to STEM organisations, to careers and employability providers.
We have a lot of materials available to support you to use the Skills Builder Universal Framework with the individuals you work with, including:
We also do a lot of work with organisations who join the Skills Builder Partnership to build the Universal Framework into their work and impact measurement systems. You can find out a lot more using the links below.
At home, you can easily support your child to build their essential skills. The good news is that there
are lots of ways that you can have a big impact, including: