Sunday, September 23, 2012

These are a few of my favorite pins...

I’m only a little addicted to Pinterest.  It is such a fun way to find ideas I didn’t know I needed and an even better way to organize and remember where things are on the Internet.  I like to think of it as an amped up “Favorites” list since I can actually see what the link is about.
Through the summer, I pinned library ideas like crazy.  I kind of feel bad for the people following me – 99% of whom are not librarians – because they got flooded with library and book related pins!  Of all the things that I found on Pinterest, below are the things that I have been most excited to learn about – either from the pin itself or from browsing the linked site a little more.
1.       Evernote – I honestly don’t remember where I first saw this productivity tool – but since I downloaded it and began using it, I’ve seen it mentioned numerous times.  Evernote is a way to keep track of notes, lists, food experiences etc.  You can download it to your desktop and download the app for your smartphone and link your accounts so that you can access your notes anywhere.  I have it on our home computer, my phone and on my school computer so that I can keep track of things from anywhere. This has been extremely helpful to me as I’ve started back for the school year and have needed to keep track of to-do lists, lesson ideas, links – and I use Evernote Food to keep track of recipes that I love.  I’ve even got a shared notebook with my husband and we keep track of our grocery list on it – so if one of us is at the store, we know what we need to pick up.
2.       PowToon – if you’ve read any of my other posts, I guess it’s probably clear that I’m really obsessed with this right now! It’s been such a fun way to engage students.  I used it as a preview of an introduction to who I am (since I’m new to my school this year) and I just finished creating a PowToon of the nonfiction section.  The kids really love the cartoon quality – and think I’m a tech genius.  The folks over at PowToons have really done a good job of helping make me look smart to the third graders ;)
3.       LiveBinders – I really wish I had known about this site sooner.  LiveBinders is a great way to create electronic binders that contain content that can be easily shared.  Binders have always been my choice of organization strategy – over file folders.  When I come across something I really like, I make sure I link it as a resource in one of my binders.  The purpose of the site is similar to Pinterest – it allows users to create a platform on which they can organize ideas and content.  The bonus here is that you can upload documents and include links that don’t have a picture to pin.  I created a Technology binder to help keep track of articles and tools I really like, and it’s something that I could share with my faculty once I have more content in it.
4.       E2Bn  - East of England Broadcast Network – has some pretty cool online collections (Myths and Legends & History’s Heroes) and tools that I cannot wait to try out.  Discovery Box especially seems like a great way to share research projects, and I hope to use it in some way with my 4th and 5th graders.  There’s also Picture Teller, Story Creator and Speech Maker to round out the available resources.
5.       50 Education Technology Tools Every Educator Should Know About- I just recently pinned this one (Evernote is on it) and as I was looking through the list, I realized there were a lot of sites I needed to study up on!  This is one of those that I think I will keep coming back to as I work on discovering new things.
6.       Tech Talk for Teachers: Let’s Get SMART – 21 tips for using a Smart Board.  Many of these are ones that I already knew, but number 7 – directions for inserting images without backgrounds into Smart Notebook files; number 19 – directions for dual display that allows you to show something on the Smartboard, while you work on something else on the same computer;, number 20 – with the newest version of the Smart Notebook software you can insert a web page into the notebook file; number 21 – an intro to using Voki with Smart Notebook 11.
7.       67 Books Every Geek Should Read to their Kids Before Age 10 This list is such a great mix of classics and newer fiction and poetry.  It really does a good job of covering all of the different genres as well – you’ll find books by Kinney, DiCamillo, Tolkien, Silverstein, Gaiman and more.  This is one I plan to keep handy at the circulation desk as quick recommendations for kids when I’m blanking outJ
I know there are a ton more than this, ones that I’ll rediscover or make use of later this year – especially because I end up being in the “pin now read later” category more often than not.  With so many ideas floating around out there in cyberspace, I am glad to have found such a fun way to learn about new ideas and pin things down that I want to try or read more about. 

What have you found on Pinterest that has helped you?

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