This week we tried something new: mind maps. I was amazed when, after only watching this short introduction to mind maps, I woke up the next morning still able to see the two sample mind maps when I closed my eyes. I could therefore remember all the French phrases on that sample mind map--and I wasn't even trying to remember them!
I think three very important keys are: use colour and weird images (the weirder, the better), use curved lines, not straight ones; put only one word or language chunk (e.g., phrasal verb) on a branch. Keep the mind map flexible as you would a pattern drill. Do not load up a branch with an entire phrase or sentence. That defeats the purpose of the mind map.