Last week I signed up to Pinterest as a teaching and blogging tool.
Pinterest is a way to collect interesting images and ideas. Each item is “pinned” to your “board” in an album, designated by you. You can collect pins by topic, however broad or detailed. You can follow another person on Pinterest and see everything they have pinned or tagged recently. You can even subscribe to their “boards” to be alerted to new content. You can repin another user’s pins into one of your own albums.
True, Pinterest is know for inspiring perfectionistic aspirations of beautifully done crafts, clothing, interiors, and food. We all like to look at pretty pictures, but almost anything can be pinned if you can find a visual for it.
What does this mean for teachers? Well, there are hundreds of collections of teaching ideas out there, ready to be collected. For instance, if you want to find some new (visual) ideas of how to encourage literacy for middle schoolers, there are probably pins for that. Helping preschoolers practice number recognition with fine motor skills? There are pins for that.
Crash test cars? Sure. Crazy cool science experiments? Oh yeah. You could spend all day on that collection, alone. Cute handouts and graphics to teach kindergarteners writing or visualize the life cycle of a plant? There are pins upon pins for that. What about examples of infographics, or better yet, classroom uses of social media,, or catchy posters about grammar points? Yup. That and more.
If anything, it’s too easy to collect pins. In my personal life, I have resisted getting drawn into finding and collecting the perfect images, but I do have a Pinterest account to collect some ideas about say, paving for garden paths and good looking food. I also have a few albums of educational ideas.
Now that I’ve started a blog, I decided I needed a separate Pinterest account specifically for education-related ideas and inspirations. The easiest way to both jumpstart and channel my process is to find some key people to follow who have similar interests. It’s a little like an RSS feed, but for visually presented ideas. Every week or so, you can receive an update on what the “boards” you are following are pinning.
You can check out my new Pinterest board, as rudimentary as it still is, and see what you think. Or try following a few boards and start collecting some ideas. I recommend finding a few interesting people to follow or searching for something you need to work on right now so it can be applied. I’m off to look for ways to present or practice parts of speech.