A “mind map” is a visual strategy to help a writer structure information, analyze it, understand it, and come up with new ideas for an essay. Instead of taking notes, information is laid out in a way that is closer to how your brain sees it. It is both artistic and analytical and encourages you to use more of your brain while writing. Having a layout of your topic beforehand can help turn it into a strong first draft.
Step #1: Brainstorm
The first thing to do when creating a Mind Map is to brainstorm your topic. In this step, you will write down everything you can think of about your essay subject. More specifically, write the name of your subject in the middle of a page (placed horizontally). After you have your subject identified, write subtopics that revolve around your central subject. Use one to four words, if possible, to define a subtopic. Example: If your central subject is “green tea,” you might use “brewing time,” “health benefits,” “how it is grown,” and “history” as subtopics.
Step #2: Organize
Branch out lines from the central subject and connect them to the subtopics that revolve around your central subject. Once you have several subtopics, branch out from each of those, drawing a line from them to other words that are subtopics of those subtopics.
Step #3: Finish
Use color pencils or crayons to set information apart and make it appealing to the eye. To complete your mind map, further define the subtopics (and their subtopics) by writing more information about them in each area. Use a different color for each initial subtopic, if possible.
Once you are finished with this, you can begin writing with your creative juices flowing.
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