There are a lot of great technology tools out there for teachers that can make it easier to connect with other educators, get ideas for classroom activities, and find resources and inspiration.
One of the newest and best of these online tools is Pinterest, which has quickly become a favourite amongst educators. Pinterest has really taken off in the past few months and is now being used by millions of people worldwide to search for and store useful online materials. Pinterest is a great social networking tool that you can use for educational purposes, whether you are a teacher or a student. This tool can make it possible to create boards (which are similar to visual folders) for specific projects and to collect and share lesson resources. Using online “pinboards” teachers can save website, photos, blog posts, videos to one easily accessible and usable place.
What is Pinterest
The Pinterest application has quickly become one of the newest and best ways for teachers to share resources and information. Put simply it is a visual pin board that allows users to create boards (visual folders) easily ‘pin’ parts of the web (text, images, videos, websites, etc.) onto those boards making it easier for them to refer to these later on your laptop/pc/smartphone.
One of Pinterest’s main advantages is its ability to save links to resources that you discover on the web. We all find really interesting articles, images or videos which would be useful for another day. The problem until now has been to find a way to save these items in one place where you can refer back to them. The visual nature of Pinterest makes it so easy to rediscover resources we have saved previously and to store them under a relevant topic title or heading. The beauty of this is the fact that all the images link back to the original source, so you won’t find yourself searching around for the place where you found the image.
Pinterest is the third most popular social media application after Facebook and Twitter. When you type a keyword in the search bar of Pinterest, you access hundreds, if not thousands of ideas from all over the world. Facebook does not have that capability. Facebook is about connecting with family and friends you know; Pinterest is about getting to know people who have similar interests.
Education is one of the fastest growing categories of boards and pins on Pinterest and is the first place many teachers choose to search when they are looking for ideas, links, articles, resources and educational products. It’s probably the best tool for collecting the best and most innovative content you can find on the web.
How are Teachers Using Pinterest
Pinterest is an ideal tool for teacher for a variety of reasons. Here are some ways that teachers and educators around the world are currently using it.
- Pinterest is ideal for getting inspired on a wide range of topics.You could get inspiration for decorating your classroom. There are tons of photos of great classroom setups, from playschools to primary schools that you can use for inspiration.
- Pinterest is great for organizing your ideas. You may often find yourself jotting down ideas or bookmarking websites and then forgetting about them? Because Pinterest is visual it can help you keep these ideas organized and easy-to-find when you need them.
- You can follow interesting boards on Pinterest. Some teachers have created fantastic boards on certain educational/curricular topics. If you follow them then anytime things are posted to it you’ll see it immediately in your own feed.
- You could use Pinterest to find fun ideas for new projects. You’ll find some really great ideas when you look through educational pins on the site.
- Pinterest is also full of great art & craft ideas, both for you and the students. Just use the search feature on Pinterest and you will soon be browsing through lots of interesting pins full of useful pictures, web links and blog posts.
- Likewise if you are looking for ways to organize your classroom then you could search through pins for some great, often very creative, ways to keep your class neat and tidy.
- You’ll find a wealth of lessons, ideas, resources and pintables on Pinterest to look through. Some of these link to commercial resources and publications but many link to resources that are both free and useful.
- You can also locate great images for your lessons. Pinterest is a very visual resource, which is what makes it such a great place to look when you’re trying to find images for a lesson.
- You could search through the pins on the site for some ideas on suitable science experiments for primary children
- Get ideas on how to make learning more hands-on. There are pages and pages worth of pins all about hands-on projects for students.
- Find great books to use in the classroom. It can be tough to choose books for young readers that are both fresh and age appropriate. Luckily, you’ll find some help on that when you look through Pinterest.
- You can also collaborate with other teachers and educators. Through Pinterest, teachers can create collaborative boards. This makes it simple to work together on projects, build better lessons, or just connect over shared ideas.
- Use Pinterest to get links to great I.T. and tech resources. Pinterest is a great place to find out about new tech resources for teachers, including places to print off materials, track your students, or get free educational videos, among other things.
- Use Pinterest to learn how to help with behaviour management. You can find pins and talk with other educators for new ideas on how to handle your students, from rewarding them for doing well to handling a disruptive child.
- Find great teaching blogs to read. If you’re looking for more reading material, you’ll find it on Pinterest. There are loads of teacher blogs and educational posts pinned that you can look through.
- Find tutorials. Not sure how to take on a project or tackle a new technology? You can use Pinterest to find helpful tutorials that’ll make it easy.