Recently, our professional development department was preparing to work with teachers on transitioning to the Common Core. In order to make it a productive session, we were planning to invite teachers to bring their own laptops and mobile devices, so that they could walk away with ready-to-use plans. During a pre-conversation with the administrator in charge, we were told that the teachers did not have access to laptops or mobile devices and that we should alter our plan.
Not exactly the response I expected. However, I was surprised during one of our first activities when I heard a group of teachers talking about finding resources to support Common Core on the resource sharing site Pinterest. I concluded that the administrator had misrepresented the teachers in both their interest and their ability to use technology resources.
For anyone unfamiliar, Pinterest functions like an online bulletin board of images, links, and ideas. These collections can be grouped and shared so that users can follow and gain inspiration from the collections of others. According to the Pinterest site, collections on Pinterest often focus on planning weddings, decorating homes, and organizing favorite recipes and crafts.
So, how are teachers using Pinterest? It turns out, teachers are using Pinterest in all kinds of interesting ways. This blog post on Edutopia provides a video play list of the ways Pinterest is being used in education. In addition, Edutopia’s Pinterest boards cover many of the hot topics in education.
A quick search shows that many educators are in fact using Pinterest to pin and share ideas for Common Core Standards (see image below). As with so many web resources, careful consideration has to be paid to the materials found on Pinterest. Just because they are labeled Common Core doesn’t mean they are all high quality. However, with so many different states and organizations preparing and releasing truly helpful resources, teachers may find Pinterest an interesting place to organize and follow the best of what is out there.
I am interested in the idea of teachers finding and sharing resources that help them prepare to meet the demands of the Common Core. I see many different ways teachers are using Pinterest: pinning ways to decorate your classroom, new ideas for lesson plans, and tips to improve your teaching techniques, among other things. It’s becoming a new resource for teachers to organize their teaching life.
Are you using Pinterest for an educational purpose? I’d love to hear about it. Don’t have a Pinterest page? Are you ready to get started? Check out The Teacher’s Quick Guide To Pinterest to learn more.
Diane Rymer is our Director of Professional Development and is responsible for the overall development and implementation for all of our professional development programs. Diane brings a wealth of professional development experience, including Supervisor of Professional Development at Baltimore County Public Schools and Assistant Director of Professional Development at Maryland Public Television. Diane earned her Master’s of Science/Technology for Educators from John Hopkins University and her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Loyola University, Maryland.