I just had the MOST FUN at #nErDcampMI a literacy and technology Edcamp hosted by friends from the Nerdy Book Club. There’s a lot that I could write about in a reflection post but since so many people had questions about the padlets that I was making I thought I’d write a bit about that. (At least for my first post.)
For those of you that aren’t familiar with it, Padlet is a great little tool where you can create a virtual cork board. It allows you to put images, media, links, and text. I’ve used it with students as a way to gather thinking around a lesson or as a free way for them to create a website. The best part is that it is free and it’s really easy to use!
During the two day fun and learning fest I began to gather my thoughts and notes from sessions into Padlets. Why? Because I’m a visual learner and I love to see everything laid out for me. Here in my notes Padlet, which a few people also posted on, I was able to screenshot specific slides and jot my notes as the presenters were talking. The great thing about this tool is that it can be collaborative and is much more visual than a Google doc. Although those are great too!
I also made one whole Padlet for the Best Books of 2014 (and other years) session hosted by Donalyn Miller and Katherine Sokolowski because I love to be able to see the covers as I shop! This also worked really well because other people were able to jump on and add books as people talked and I cross checked with the people taking notes on the Google doc. Talk about team work!
Some ideas for classroom use
- Easy website design tool, students can work together to collaborate. Try it with another school!
- Gather links, resources, or ideas
- Exit ticket or response from the class
- Collaboration board with another class
- Backchannel discussion
- Record of books read or interest “list” (I want to try this one this year!)
- <Your idea here!> Leave some in the comments!
If you’d like a little tutorial on how to use Padlet here’s a nice one by Richard Byrne. It’s fairly intuitive and if you spend about 20 minutes playing you’ll be an expert in no time! My one complaint is that it doesn’t work very well on the iPads and my students found it very frustrating at times. Posts would disappear, not let them type or copy and past text in, and it was difficult to click through to any links. Hopefully those bugs will get worked out soon because I’d love to be able to use this tool with my class more.