The development and posting of new websites on the internet occurs on a daily basis. Most new sites now have a social networking twist. The sites in this post today all have online social elements and I am reviewing them with an educational perspective and addressing how these sites can be used at home to promote learning.
One Page Per Day
One Page Per Day is a social networking/writing website. It encourages users to create and type a minimum of one page each day which can include poems, short stories, novels, journaling, letters, or any style of creative writing. Users can use their already created Twitter or Google accounts to login to this page, making it seamless to share your progress. Sharing your progress is not required; however you can share your writing with your online community and friends for them to get a “glimpse” of what you are writing. Your audience can also comment and provide feedback on what they are reading. A reminder is sent to your email or your twitter account daily to remind you to write your page every day. This is a great resource to get kids writing and encourages them to keep on writing their ideas. Carefully supervising the Twitter or Google accounts, reviewing the creative writing before sharing , and following up on feedback is an important responsibility of the parent when a child is using this website.
Pinterest is an invite only social bookmarking website. Instead of storing links to your favorites within your browser, you can actually take clips of the pages and add them into various “boards” that you have created on this site. Each board is user -created based on topics important to them. For example, I created boards called Books Worth Reading, Ed Tech, For the Home, Favorite Places, and Products I love. Some of these were ideas from Pinterest and others I developed on my own.
As you are searching through the web, you can pin pictures of things that you deem are important and would fit into one of your boards. The picture saved to your board along with the link. You can access this page whenever you want to go back to the page along with being able to share this link with others who share a similar interest or whom you are already friends with on other social networking sites.
Another benefit to this site is to see what others are bookmarking. In just 30 minutes on this site, I was completely inspired by the ideas of others. I found ideas for my future garden, a great cookie recipe for an upcoming cookie exchange, and a cool science experiment that could be done at home. I can see tweens and teens also getting hooked onto this site searching up topics they would enjoy learning more about as well as pinning their favorite things, sites for their classes, and sharing them with their friends online. Again, parental supervision is important and is a great way to share through pictures and discussion about the ideas posted.
Lino It is a free digital sticky board. You create sticky notes that can be dragged, dropped, and resized anywhere on the virtual pin board page. On the sticky notes you can can add text, change colors of the post and text, as well as add pictures, videos, and attachments. You can also create multiple pin boards depending on the topic. Kids could use this website as a to-do list, a way to transport ideas for school assignments, or as a create way to create a school project like a book report or science demonstration. Your pin boards can also be use collaboratively and shared with others online.
All of these tools are great social networking tools. They can be used not only for online fun, but can also be used for an educational twist. Encourage your children to check out these tools and see the create ways that they can use them to expand their learning. They are sites that you can share together and be interactive within the social networking concept that kids like to use today.
Article By Laura Ketcham-VanHellemont
Picture By sylvar
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