Tuesday, September 2, 2014

My Pinterest Class Portfolio Boards

As I mentioned in The Stack post, the biggest chunk of my time each week is spent corresponding with students one-on-one about their Storybook projects. It makes sense for that conversation to take place one-on-one, but at the same time I often share online resources with one student that other students, now or in the future, might be able to use. I have finally found a good way to facilitate that re-use: Pinterest Portfolios.

Brief Description. I have a Myth-Folklore Pinterest Board and an Indian Epics Pinterest Board where I pin online resources. Some of those pins are links I am sharing with students in our back-and-forth about their projects, while other pins come from things I share via Twitter (more on that in a separate post).


Details. There's really nothing to say in terms of detail here: Pinterest is just so fun and easy to use! I like the fact that it is visually eye-catching. Not only does that allow my students to scan the page more readily than they would scan a traditional list of links (poor Diigo - so powerful, but it's not fun to use), Pinterest is also appropriate for the content I am sharing. Visual images are an important part of both of my classes, so the visual aspects of Pinterest are really excellent for my purposes. In terms of text and annotation, I try to include enough text so that a Control-F on the page can perform a quick search.

History. This is new for Fall 2014. I started using Pinterest for some of my other projects last year, and I liked it so much that I decided to try using it with my classes this year.

Goals. I have a variety of goals for this:
  • Save resources. Pinterest allows me to quickly and easily save items that would be inaccessible in old emails or lost in the old Twitter stream. What I save this semester can be accessible to me in future semesters too.
  • Share resources. I will be very glad if students browse these resources, either just for the pleasure of it or to find resources they can actually use for class.
  • Inspire students. I would also like to inspire students to create their own Pinterest Portfolios for the class (more on that in a separate post).

General Thoughts

As that last goal suggests, my own Pinterest Class Portfolios are part of a larger Pinterest experiment that I am trying in the class this semester, hoping to get students to make use of Pinterest also. I'll write more about that later in the semester. What's nice is that even if that project does not really take off, I am still getting some benefits from having my own class Portfolios this way.

Diigo is the more powerful bookmarking tool, of course, and next summer I may decide to go through my Boards and create Diigo tags for all the pages I've pinned. So far, though, I have not felt a need to do that. For the basic search and re-use that is involved, Pinterest is working just fine as a bookmarking tool, and the visual appeal makes it much more like to grab my students' interest too.

Since this is something new for this semester I will have to report back as things proceed. Meanwhile, you will find a Pinterest Board widget below: it's for Myth-Folklore!




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