The basic idea underpinning this simple activity is to encourage students to build-up a set of Key Revision Concepts with a visual dimension that should help them understand how and why these concepts can be connected.

This is not only useful for revision – both the more-general “end of course” type and the more-specific “end of module” type – it can also help students construct coherent exam answers by illustrating the connections between related concepts: the focus on remembering Key Terms and how they’re connected lends itself to the development of a strong structure upon which a good exam answer can be quickly and easily created.

The Creative Connections file includes a worked-example of a Culture and Identity grid plus some blank grids students that can be used for any part of the course you want.

The file also contains some short (and I like to think pithy) instructions for both single-player and team-based versions. You can use the latter if you want to set-up some competitive classroom revision exercises. While the How To Play instructions should give you a good idea about how to use the grid, you might like to note some further ideas:

It’s useful to make the terms you add to the Board as general / wide-ranging as possible. 

Try not to be too specific with the terms you add because you will find it difficult to connect further ideas if the concepts you use aren’t general enough. The key thing to remember here is that students should be trying to create a broad overview of some part of their course. More-specific ideas, such as sociological studies, can be explained as part of the connecting process if students have to justify the connection they’ve made, either to themselves in single-player mode or their opponents in team-play mode.

If necessary, you can connect two or more Boards but it’s probably best if you can keep them separate and self-contained. There are 36 hexagons on each Board and this should give students more than enough information / connections for any exam topic, if you choose the initial Key Term carefully.

Aside from this the rules are fairly loose and you can add / subject rules as you see fit. If you find the Board helpful and have created new rules to add to the basic format please feel free to let me know in the Comment section. 

You can also download a further Creative Connections file that just contains How To Play instructions, a selection of hexagonal grids and no example grid.

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