Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Pinner Lesley Karpiuk

Meet the Pinner: One look at Lesley Karpiuk's collection of Pinterest boards and there's no doubting her username, IHeartEdTech, says it all! She is a instructional technology specialist for Carmel Clay Schools and has been pinning for a year and a half. She couldn't narrow her boards down to one favorite, but she shares a number of inspirational and informative ideas with us today. Read on to see what Lesley had to say:

I have a lot of boards, but my favorites that I pin to most often include the Web 2.0 board and the Teacher Tools & Lessons board, because a lot of times teachers want to see tools that THEY can use with kids or get lesson ideas. I've recently started a board called How Teachers are Using BYOD where I pin ideas as our staff specifically share them with me on how they're using technology in the classroom. I am often asked for realistic, practical examples that our own teachers are doing with technology integration, (How are my colleagues USING those cool tools you shared with us?) and I hope to have this board grow with lots of ideas that showcases great ideas going on in our district to inspire fellow colleagues and others.
How would you describe your use of Pinterest?
I needed a solution for collecting and organizing all of the edtech tools and resources as I came across them so that I wouldn't forget or lose them. As an Instructional Technology Specialist, I'm often asked for resources or tool recommendations by staff for specific needs, and I found Pinterest to be the perfect solution to help ME stay organized so I could quickly access those saved resources for them.

I follow a lot of other edtech enthusiasts and often re-pin great things I see them collecting or blogging about, but mostly I create pins from finds on the web. I'll read an article or see a blog post about a tool or resource and I'll check it out and then pin it so that I remember it later. This is also a way for me to share my new finds with others.

What have you gained from using Pinterest?
I've tried keeping lists in Google Docs, but one of my favorite parts about Pinterest is that it's visual. I'm a visual person, so when asked if I know of any great tools for a specific project, I may picture a tool in my head but may not remember what it was called or what its link is. Having it pinned means I can find it quickly because I remember the image. I also love being able to organize my pins onto various boards that I've created for different purposes or content areas; that also makes it easier to find what I'm looking for fast. I use Pinterest to organize all of the great articles, resources, and tools in the edtech world not only for me to reference, but for our staff to be able to use for inspiration or ideas. I use the description box to explain how I could see the tool being used in the classroom, or more info on what it's all about, to make it clear and simple for others. (Or just to help me remember what I was thinking when I pinned it and look at it later! Let's be honest - there's SO MUCH good stuff out there in the edtech world, it's hard to keep it all straight!)

Can you share any advice for new Pinners?If the site you want to pin doesn't have a pinnable image, (I come across this problem with a lot of web 2.0 tools!) take a screenshot of the webpage so you can upload that for your pin instead, because seeing the website will jog your memory when you're looking for it later. Don't forget to edit the pin after you upload your own image to put in the URL to the tool so that the image becomes a clickable direct link to the resource!

Need ideas on who to follow? My favorite edtech pinners right now are Richard Byrne of FreeTech4Teachers.com because I always feel like I learn about the newest web tools there, and Darla Ashton, who has an impressive collection of pins for Assistive Technology that is constantly growing.

My Instructional Specialist colleagues have an amazing collaborative Pinterest board with tons of great K-12 resources to support best practices in general education, assistive technology, behavior and special education.

I also re-pin a lot from Edutopia and Teaching Channel for even more educational inspiration and ideas.

When pinning for educational purposes, definitely create boards (as many as you need) to organize your pins and make it easy to find what you need later. You may also want to have boards for specific audiences or content areas that you can share with that group. Encourage fellow staff members to follow you, so that they stay on top of your latest finds, too. What inspires you may also inspire them!

Pinnovation Invitation: Lesley has given us several ideas on where to find resources on Pinterest. If you are an active Pinterest user, share some of your favorite follows in the comments below. If you are new to Pinterest, check out Lesley's recommendations and comment on one of them!

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