The “Cricket’s Dwelling” was adapted from the book “Souvenirs Entomologiques” by Fabre, a famous French entomologist in the 19th century. In favor of crickets, the author introduced the characteristics of crickets’ dwellings and their talent for building them on the basis of careful and continuous observation.
After learning “Cricket’s Dwelling”, students’ strong interests in cricket’s dwellings have been aroused. Under the guidance of teachers, the children eagerly picked up the brushes and then presented the textual descriptions of the inner and outer holes of crickets’ dwellings in the form of mind maps, giving full play to the advantages of visualization of mind maps to further understand the logic and the structure of the text.
Some of the works showed us that crickets’ dwelling characteristics of “careful choice of address” and “unwilling to let things go”, while others told us through their mind maps that crickets’ dwellings have a drainage function achieved by the “sloping tunnel”. Some works reflected the description that “there is always a clump of grass being half-covered at the exit …” to show that their dwellings are very secretive. Some students even described the great “project” of building up the dwellings by collecting soil, moving it, pushing it, laying it, and trimming it until it deepens and widens throughout the winter through the crickets’ soft “tools”, such as their front and back feet, which was greatly appreciated.
The exquisite and innovative mind maps gave children a sense of excitement and accomplishment. Moreover, they have been widely appreciated and praised.
The mind map, visualizing the thinking, has dramatically aroused the children’s interests in learning Chinese. We sincerely believe that mind maps will play an increasingly critical role in Chinese teaching in the near future.