Pinterest in the Classroom?

PinterestMany web marketing companies have taken the growing popularity of Pinterest as an opportunity for a link building strategy; teachers see another use for it. The typical classroom lecture tends to become very boring for students as the teacher drones on and on about a single topic. It’s hard to maintain the students’ attention for an hour or two, when lecturing is the only method of delivering the lesson. Teachers are always looking for effective alternative methods of reaching their students.

Pinterest is becoming a useful tool for teachers in many ways. It not only allows them to discover new lesson plans and ways to conduct lessons, but Pinterest allows teachers to share tips with each other. This also offers new avenues to engage students. By interacting with students through Pinterest, students are able to participate in class on a new creative level. They can become more motivated to become engaged with the class. This engagement doesn’t stop in the classroom, students repin with each other, deepening their involvement with Pinterest and each other.

A University of Minnesota professor teaching a basic media graphics course is already using Pinterest to gauge class participation. She looks at their graphic designs and compares them to their “likes” with Pinterest. Their Pinterest “likes” help the professor understand the students’ interests, and the inspiration that motivates them. The students are also able to share design ideas and provide input and feedback to each other.

Another professor from Minnesota State University is using Pinterest as part of their class blog function. Students are required to participate in a multimedia class blog that is now expanded to incorporate data citation, utilizing Pinterest. The students are using Pinterest to enhance their storytelling by integrating it into their blog posts.

Within this classroom, the males were typically adverse to Pinterest and believed it was more of a trend for females. But after some quick introductory lessons from a female student, they quickly adopted the platform. Social sharing and interaction then greatly increased as Pinterest became adopted.

There are many ways to utilize Pinterest for classroom activities; teachers just need to figure out how it will be suit their course. Professors can simply put together materials for class or direct student study groups to collaborate through it. The majority of students learn visually, so this can be a break through method of reaching them. Activities done through Pinterest sure beat sitting through an hour and a half long lecture, at least in my opinion.

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