Join Garrick Chow for an in-depth discussion in this video Mind-map your prezi, part of Prezi Tips and Tricks.
- [Narrator] Whenever starting a new project or pursuit, whether it's writing a paper, preparing a speech, or creating a new Prezi presentation, one of the toughest hurdles to cross is sometimes just the task of getting your thoughts organized. You often have many of the key pieces of information in your head, but you haven't yet constructed them into coherent thoughts, or, you might not yet have identified what pieces are missing. In increasing the popular technique for organizing and planning a project, is the practice of mind mapping. A mind map is essentially a diagram for organizing your thoughts visually. Unlike simply jotting down your thoughts in a list, a mind map allows you to start with a central idea, and expand outward, to show how your ideas relate to each other.
It's a great technique for brainstorming, identifying key issues, understanding complex concepts, or just to visualize the relationship between ideas. Here's an example of a mind map I created with an iPad app called SimpleMind. And this is a mind map I created when I was working on a course on eLearning. So you can see how I started here with eLearning in the center, and I branched out into topics like the background of eLearning, preparation, required tools, recording, and distribution, and each one of those subtopics has their own subtopics as well. And this allowed me to really visualize the big picture of my course.
Now although there are many third party tools and apps available for mind mapping, if you're a Prezi user, you already have a fantastic mind mapping tool with Prezi itself. Prezi provides all the tools you need to work with text and objects to map and plan out your presentations. So before you create your Prezi presentation, you might try using Prezi itself to map and plan out that presentation. So, for example, I'm currently logged in to my Prezi account, so I can click Create a new prezi. And from here I can look for a template that looks like it might work for mapping out a presentation.
I'm gonna click More. So, for example, this Subway template might work, with its central frame in the middle here with the number one, and I can branch out from there with the subsequent frames around it. Or I could scroll down, maybe this one called Impact would work. It also has a central hub that I could start with and then branch out from. Basically you just want to browse through the templates, and look for layouts that might lend themselves to what you have in mind. They don't have to be the layouts you intend to use for your actual presentation. Focus on finding one to help you plan your presentation. Now, down towards the bottom, you'll find a couple of templates designed specifically for mind mapping.
For example, we have The Big Idea, one called Mind Mapping. Here's Brainstorm Freely, and Brainstorm with Cubes. So, for example, maybe I'll just select this one called Brainstorm with Cubes. I'll double-click it. So I can see here it says that this template is based off a strategy called cubing, where you start with your main topic or issue, and then apply six points of view to that issue. And you can see we already have the basic structure set up for us over here. So if I were putting together a presentation on say, eLearning, I might start by typing that into the cube in the center.
And then around that, we have frames to add any related issues, subtopics, or ways to expand on your main issue. Now the way this particular template is set up, I can currently change the text here that says Describe it, or the text underneath it. So to use this frame, I'm gonna have to click to select it, and you may have to zoom out of it to be able to select it. And then I'll click the Ungroup button up here. So now these are all separate elements and I can select and edit each of these text blocks. So the heading here currently says Describe it, but you can name these things anything that works for you.
During this point of the mind mapping process, it's important to just get all the ideas that pop into your head down, so you can sort through them later, and decide what to keep and expand on, and what to discard. So, for example, when talking about eLearning, I know that I wanna provide some background and an overview of what it is. So I'll call this Background. Below that word says Examine the subject closely. I could change this text to something like, an overview of eLearning, or I could just simply delete it. And here where it says Click to add text, I'm just gonna start brain dumping anything I can think of about the background of eLearning that I might wanna cover in my presentation.
I know that I wanna talk about the differences between it and live training, so I'll type differences from live training. I wanna talk about the pros and cons of eLearning, and maybe under pros, I'll put another line, and hit Tab, to list out the pros I can think of. It's self paced, and it frees up classroom time. And I'll do the same for cons.
So there it is. Now, you may prefer to come up with the main topic areas first before listing out the details like this. So I might move to the next frame, and I'll just select it, and Ungroup it again. And I'll add a title of Required Tools. And here, I would list out things like microphones, headphones, recording software, and editing software. But if I'm not ready to think about all that stuff yet, I can just move on to the next frame.
I think I'll Ungroup this one. And I'll title this one Preparation. And now I'm gonna continue going around and adding other topics like recording, editing, and distribution, anything I can think of related to my topic. If I needed more squares, I can just create my own. So again, the idea behind mind mapping is to get all of your ideas down and see how they relate to each other. Instead of creating a new prezi and trying to figure it out as you go, mind mapping let's you see your ideas on the screen, and then figure out a logical progression with which to build your presentation.
And Prezi's immense canvas and drawing and text tools make it perfect for placing concepts, images, charts, and other content in relation to one another. If you have a particularly complex topic, and you run out of room in the default layout here, you can just zoom out, and add more squares or sides to work with. It's very unlikely that you'll run out of room. So, just start with a template that looks like it will work for you, and start getting your ideas down. When you're done, if you have a subscription level to Prezi that allows it, you can come up to the Share menu, and download your mind map as a PDF, or as a portable prezi, so you can refer to it onscreen, or in a printout, when it comes time to build your actual presentation.
Or, you can just keep your mind map open in its own tab or window, and create your prezi in a separate browser window. Whatever the case, your presentations will definitely benefit if you take some time at the beginning to plan and map out your thoughts and ideas.
- Mind-mapping your prezi
- Moving and grouping objects
- Using favorites to save and reuse content
- Working with text
- Editing graphics, including photos, shapes, and charts
- Presenting your prezi