Sunday, June 24, 2012

Pintrest

(Used with permission (c) 2012)
Today I was introduced to Pintrest, a social network that functions as a sort of electronic bulletin board where users can share recipes, websites, classroom resources, pictures, and lots of other resources from vintage art posters to workout routines.  Most of the "pins" take you to external websites via hyperlinks.  

It's fairly easy to get started.  You begin by requesting an invite from the Pintrest website.  After receiving your invite by email, you can begin setting up your profile with personalization options much like other social networking sites.  A convenient feature is that you can link your Pintrest account to either your Facebook profile, your Twitter account, or both.  This synchronizes your information for you and allows you to post to the other social networking sites via Pintrest, allowing the spread of information and resources to be simpler and more streamlined, while also reaching more people.

(Used with permission (c) 2012)
After creating your profile, you will be prompted to choose a couple subjects that interest you.  Pintrest will then automatically have you "follow" a few other users with similar interests.  You have the option to continue following these people, or can unfollow them using a similar interface to Twitter.  For those users you follow, and for those who follow you, the things they have most recently pinned to their various boards will appear on your home screen each time you log in, allowing you to Re-Pin anything that you would like to keep for yourself and share with your followers.  Each time you "pin" something to one of your fully customizable boards, you have the option to immediately Tweet about your new pin, allowing you to continue spreading information to those not currently using Pintrest.  You also have the option to comment about each pin to help you know what you'll find within each pin.  This makes it much easier to keep everything organized.

(Used with permission (c) 2012)
I see Pintrest as having great potential for educators, as many teachers have already pinned links to resource websites, posted tips for crafts and projects, and given reviews and suggestions of educational technology to use in the classroom.  Using the "Follow" feature to connect with other educators, Pintrest allows you even more opportunities for networking and sharing ideas with colleagues both in your school, and around the world.  In many ways, Pintrest operates as both the demonstration booths at conferences and conventions, the teacher's lounge/water cooler, and also the teacher book and supply store all in one.  But in addition to the resources themselves, you are also directly connected to the creators of these resources whom you can ask for more ideas and talk to them about what has made these resources so successful.  It takes no time at all to find hundreds of applications for technology in your classroom or hundreds of beginning of the year community building activities.  Here is a picture of my Educational Technology board.  Here I have posted lots of resources that I can go back and browse through to find new applications for educational technology that I can use in my classroom.

In many ways, Pintrest is a graphic representation of the social bookmarking function of Diigo and other browsers that allow you to see, save, and share resources with your personal learning network.  So check it out!  If you would like to follow me on Pintrest, I would love to share resources with you.  You can find my profile Here.

*All images used with permission: All images submitted by Author.

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