I hope you had a restful Thanksgiving holiday! As we gear up to Thursday's PD day, I thought I'd share something I found while developing top-down webs. There is a drive extension called draw.io which is a fairly easy to use application that will allow you to create top down webs in the suggested Keys to Literacy design. In order to find it, try the following steps.
- Go into your drive and tap the red box that says "new".
- Look down until you see "more." Click that.
- A side popup will appear, and it will say at the bottom "connect more apps." Click that.
- When the popup box appears, use the search tool at the top and type in draw.io.
- The icon is a orange square with 3 white boxes in it. (See image above)
- On the left, it will say connect. That should do it!
Advantages of draw.io include not having to erase and recreate if doing it on paper, and the ability to create an answer key version, then make a copy of it and remove the text if necessary. At the beginning of the year, I left many text options filled in, and worked with the students to fill in the missing blanks. As the year progresses, I am leaving many more blanks open. At some point soon, I will only make a master key for myself and allow them to create their own. However, for students who struggle, this is a good alternative!
Draw.io is the only app or extension that I have found that allows you to change the shape AND the color as you go. Apps like poplet do not allow for shape changing, which is critical in a Top Down web.
Unfortunately, a major drawback is that it is *not* iPad friendly. At this point, I am creating them on my laptop and printing them out for students, or projecting my completed key. I have been in contact with them and hope to see an app, or an iPad friendly chrome version soon.
If you need any help with draw.io, please reach out and ask! It takes some trial and error, but now that I have it figured out, I won't go back to paper and pen!