Affinity Diagrams with Word Magnets

Recently I was talking to a colleague about using technology in large group settings to foster discussions.  He asked if there were any tools to support Affinity Diagramming.  This was a new term for me so he sent along a short article explaining its use.  Affinity Diagramming is a process that can help a group gather information (ideas, opinions, issues) and organize them based on their natural relationships. As luck would have it, I was working on a presentation for Interactive Whiteboards and came across a wonderful tool called Word Magnets that would help someone lead an Affinity Diagram, a brainstorming session, or any large group discussion where you want to organize the thoughts of the participants.

Word Magnets is a web-based tool that creates moveable text that can be organized by color, by location or by grouping.    If you can use a word processor, you can use Word Magnets.  The great feature is that you don’t need to create a username or password to use the site.  You can simply visit the site and start typing in words.  If you teach in a classroom with an Interactive Whiteboard, Word Magnets would be a great tool to use.  Students can come to the “board” and physically move the text around to form groupings.  Word Magnets is a perfect tool for those kinesthetic and visual learners in the class.

For more information on Word Magnets, be sure to check out the short tutorial below.  For a article explaining how to use Affinity Diagramming, check out the following article.


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