Make Links

Make connections and links.  This area of skill is about making connections and links between ideas.  Learning things as separate facts is much less powerful than learning how they all link together.  For example, someone good at this skill was thinking about what happens when you go round a corner in the car and linked this with vacuum cleaners to end up inventing the Dyson.  Nobody had thought of putting these ideas together before because it seems like there should be no link.


I can put things into groups that have something in common.


I can group things together and then find new ways of grouping them.  This could be objects, people, and colours anything.


I can play spot the odd one out.  People can give me four objects and I can find ways of linking them together with words.  For example a spoon and a cupboard may both be made of wood and could both be found in the kitchen.


I can use metaphor.  For example I could say my town is a HIVE of activity.  It isn’t really a bee hive but it helps you imagine the town with lots of busy people moving around like bees in a hive.  For evidence I could try writing / telling a story with metaphors in.  The metaphors would help to make the story easier to imagine.


I can show how ideas are linked together.  I might use a spidergram where I put one idea in the middle and then others around it with links.  I can write on each link to show the connection.  I might use a mind map or might just write the first idea then a link to a second one then to a third like a chain of ideas.


I can use a spidergram or mind map to produce a summary of a topic.  It may be a topic I am revising for an exam or it may be something I am researching that is quite complex and involves lots of different ideas, facts and points of view.  I can clearly explain the links between the ideas.  I might include metaphors and analogies in the map.


I can make links between things I have learnt in different contexts.  I could create a dance about an historical event or a painting about how I feel listening to music or create a poem where people assume they are one character until the end lines when it is obviously about something else.


When teaching someone a new idea I can find links to what they know already and use an analogy which I peel back slowly as they begin to understand.  Alternatively, I could make a film or poem that uses analogy to make a strong point such as Green Day’s song ‘Holiday’ to consider how the Iraq war had been presented in the press.


I can take concepts that are difficult to grasp and explain them by creating a mix of analogies.  Something like quantum physics, selfish genes, tactical voting, the stock market, gender bias, anti competitive global trading etc. I may be asked to lecture on a topic, win a teaching award or make media on an obscure topic that attracts more general readers.


Make Links


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