Sunday, January 16, 2011

An Experiment with Tagul and a Poem

I'm enrolled in a class to earn a new credential: a Preliminary Administrative Services Credential (PASC).

Among other things, a school administrator should be a leader in using technology, so this PASC class includes some how-to sessions on using technology, one being TAGUL.

Tagul allows you to take a body of text and have it analyzed for most often used words. After some edit options, the result is a poster-esque rendition of key words.

The Tuscon tragedy is in the news and on the opinion pages. I thought it would be interesting to try Tagul's analysis on a recent Op-Ed piece by Franck Rich that appeared in the New York Times on January 15th. (After creating the cloud in Tagul... opps... I deleted it.)

Then I did more work; this time on a poem by Robert Frost. I suppressed words like the, and, etc., and added a link so that if you click on a word... it goes to an online dictionary. (Think of the possibilities for teaching a reading lesson to young students who lack all the vocabulary: an easy, visual, exciting way to access the text.) Cool.

Here are the results: