I taught two Idea Mapping Workshops at Boeing in Seattle October 27-30, 2008. In a previous posting about these workshops, I mentioned that one of the participants (Steve Dang) went home and taught idea mapping to his daughter who was struggling with AP Physics. A couple weeks after the workshops I received a note from Steve’s daughter Melinda saying that idea mapping had helped her in physics. She promised to send along her examples. So here are the first few and her story thus far.

Melinda is in 11th grade and took on the challenge of AP Physics with no previous physics or calculus background. Before her dad introduced her to Idea Mapping she was getting about 40-50% (F). This came despite her efforts to study tediously for 6 hours at a time. So she changed her method.

After her introduction to this tool she would read a chapter and then make her map. Her current grade has already improved to a 76% in a very short few weeks ( and hopes to continue to see improvement). Melinda thinks the progress came from mapping, learning associations between word problems and concepts, and just a lot more studying on my part.

Since she was able to improve and struggle through AP Physics, Melinda was also able to overcome her weaknesses in math. She stated, “Pre-calculus to me now is very simple, it’s strange how Physics indirectly helped my math, I would’ve never thought of it that way.”

Her first map topic was “Fluids”, and the second map above is the back side of the paper on that same chapter. The third example looks like it has something to do with the volume and bouyancy of a balloon. I’ll share a couple more of hers in the next posting. She has agreed to occasionally share more examples including studying for vocabulary for SATs.