Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Word Clouds

You know how much I love Wordle. The only problem I see with it is that you can't save your wordle. You need to take a screen grab to do that. While I was re-exploring the ABCYa site today, thanks to @2sparkley, I noticed a Word Cloud feature. It's a lot like Wordle in that you can input text, then organize font, layout, colour etc. Once you're happy, you can save it to your computer, or print it out.

Like Wordle, I think Word Clouds is such a great way to introduce new vocabulary, highlight sight words, practise spelling words, or have kids focus on new words they will find in a book. And the great thing is, once its saved, you can then manipulate it as an image if you want (See my tutorial on how to add pics to Wordle.) However, it's not as versatile as Wordle as far as changes you can make to colour selection etc.

Take a moment to check out the huge ABCYa site. It's well worth a look around, if you want educational computer games and activities for your kids, and is neatly divided into grade level.

If you'd like more ideas on how to use Wordle with students, here is a great Google doc, ideas for language students, a slideshow including how- to directions, and a different slideshow with many great ideas, or join in and play Guess the Wordle. Most of these ideas will work with Word Clouds too. 


  1. This is a great way to improve children's spelling. I also like them to write their stories on the computer - copy and then paste into wordle to see what words they have used the most and if they then want to change some of them before the final edit of their story.

    Thanks for posting about this and I love your tutorial for adding pics to wordle.

  2. Thank YOU for starting me on that journey of discovery! That's a great idea to use wordle to discover which words have been overused, too. The wordle plus pic thing was my first real project in Photoshop and I'm determined to learn more.

  3. Hooray for ABCya! Excellent for kids and easy to save. On the upside, my students have screen shots down pat :)

  4. I must admit I have improved in screen grabbing because of wordle too. It's such a handy skill for a blogger who wants to illustrate what she sees at a site.


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