Monday, March 2, 2015

Liz Clark


Liz Clark, art teacher and technology coach at Hamilton Southeastern High School shares her Pinnovation, which comes from a post she shared on her district's blog, HSE21 Shorts: voices of our learning revolution.

Liz's Pinnovation:
Art is about the process as well as the product. As students become more sophisticated as artists, they need to understand the importance of devoting adequate time to research, planning, and idea generation. Most students want to breeze over this step and go straight to production. After they start, students realize that they did not spend enough time thinking through the process. Often this realization comes after they have devoted a great deal of time to an idea that does not work. How could I get my classes to spend time planning and developing an idea before committing it to materials?

I discovered a great way to help students gather and connect relevant information in order to make well-informed artistic decisions. My students started using a social network called Pinterest. Pinterest is like a virtual scrapbook. It is great for organizing information and visual brainstorming. I use it to collect resources for students about a topic. In the past, I checked out books from the library with examples. Often, the examples weren’t current. Now, students can see what I want them to see and create their own boards if they choose.

There are many great ideas on Pinterest. My students spend time on the site outside of the classroom. Many of them create their own pin boards. It inspires self-directed learning.

Professionally, Pinterest is a wealth of information for all things teaching, technology, art, and art education. Any time I am asked to lead a technology or art workshop, I check Pinterest for resources. If I want to teach a new idea for a student project, I can find it on Pinterest.

Liz's Tip:
When I became a member of our HSE:21 technology integration team, our mission was to equip students with the content knowledge, unique skills, and new literacies they will need to succeed in the 21st‐century global economy. The annual Indiana Art Educators Conference featured a presentation by Dr. Marjorie Manifold, who teaches at Indiana University. Her presentation introduced me to Pinterest. I saw this as a way to utilize technology to gather ideas for the classroom.

I started slowly by looking at Pinterest one or two evenings a week. The site has really grown over the years. I began to notice that it had many uses in the classroom as well. It helps to differentiate instruction and exposes students to different ideas and techniques - visual research and curation.

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