- New Tool: Pinterest is an online bulletin board where you can pin pictures and videos. It is a very popular social media site at the moment, and the Lower School teachers are using it every day. After signing up, you can create any number of boards you want (I have one for books, one for school, and one for cool ideas). You will also be prompted to download a button for your tool bar that will allow you to pin ideas to your boards. As you browse your favorite websites (or other Pinterest boards), you can pin ideas to your own boards. By doing this, you can go back later and implement the ideas that you found. You can also share your boards with other people in order to collaborate on ideas together. The LS teachers are collaborating on a board together that you can see here (email Nicole Martin for an invite if you would like to join our board). If you would like a more in-depth tutorial on Pinterest, click here for a list of available guides. Pinterest is great for collaboration amongst teachers but I can also see it being used in an US classroom when working on a project together—especially a design thinking project.
- Computer Tip: There are many tutorials or videos on YouTube that can enhance a lesson you are teaching in class. Unfortunately, many times the comments and suggested videos are not school appropriate. You also might prefer to start at a specific point in the video instead of watching the entire thing. Here are some easy tips to help you make your YouTube videos more classroom-friendly.
- Relevant Article: The first time I try a new recipe, I get more out of the process of working through it than I get from the outcome. Usually, I find changes I need to make to the recipe to get the result that works best for me. The same goes when I try a new tech tool in the classroom. I go into the lesson with a set of desired learning outcomes only to find that I need to give the students more time or explanation or outlets that will make my lesson truly effective. I go back to my desk, reflect on the lesson, and plan how I will improve it next time. Mary Beth Hertz has a wonderful article on how to “Learn from the Process” when it comes to integrating technology into your lessons. Click here to read her 5 tips for embracing continuous improvement with EdTech.