School’s out for summer! That means that it’s time to sit, relax, read, vacation, and do nothing having to do with education at all, right? Maybe not. I, for one, spent my first 3 days at professional development (see GAfE Summit posts) and then have spent the next few days cleaning. I know they call it “Spring Cleaning”, but for teachers it really seems like I don’t have time until it becomes “Summer Cleaning.” So after 3 days of cleaning the “playrooms” (isn’t that every room)
with for my girls, I needed to spend some time prepping for my summer as well.
So I don’t know if I told you yet, but I am teaching summer school. This is the first year we are including a small program for incoming kindergarten students that we identified during our screening. I am so excited to have small group (about 7 kids) and get to focus on fine motor, “script of school”, learning names, rhymes, songs, etc. (I know, some of you are thinking- “Old Kindergarten”. Let’s save a debate for another day.)
So I was doing my prep work using one of my favorite idea-gathering tools- Pinterest. I wanted to find activities that I typically use at the beginning of the year. I was so frustrated at my general boards (with over 250 pins each), that I mostly began searching all over again and collecting on a new board. So I started “Summer Cleaning” my Pinterest boards (a.k.a. falling down the Pinterest rabbit hole for a few hours). I still have work left to do, but I am so excited for the possibilities now!
Here are my tips:
- Scroll through your boards to get ideas for more specific boards. You want to make sure you have enough of a need for a separate board, but that it won’t be too overwhelming all in one. I was going to put all “Author Study” pins together, but I realized that I had enough to make separate boards for each one. I really think this will help when I jump into Mo Willems next year and want to quickly glance through ideas I have found already! On the other end, I realized that I only had a few pins for “Making Pairs of Ten”, so I think I may lump that in with decomposing pins on one board. Don’t stress though, because it will be easy to change later if needed.
- BE SPECIFIC with board names- This will really help you when you go back to search for something. No more “Did I put that on my Reading or School Ideas board?” You will know right where to look. Think about how much it will help others when they come searching for ideas from you! This could be especially helpful if you are looking for more followers. Be worth following!
- Create new boards as you go. You can create the boards first, but I found that making them as I went made more sense. I could see a bunch of pins that went together, select them, and create the board right there.
- Go back in to those boards to select options. This is as much for you as for others. You need to choose a category so that you are more “searchable” for others (Pinterest is not just for you). Hopefully you will be finding things from outside of Pinterest for others to find as well.
- Add your own stuff! If you are writing a blog, pin your own posts (my new plan)! You can also pin materials and pictures of what you are doing in your classroom. I know lots of ideas I use came from Pinterest, but I have great ideas too! Share those to pay back for all the great ideas you were able to
- Edit the description that accompanies your pin. I am SO guilty of this one. I just pin, pin, pin away and so many of the descriptions are not my own. This can be helpful if you modified it in some way, so you remember next time. Going through to update all of these, would be nearly impossible. However, remember this as you move forward. You could also edit them as you go back in and use those ideas again.
- DELETE– Come on, you know there are pins in there that you never used, didn’t like, or have no idea when you pinned in the first place. It is so hard to let go of some of these loved pins that you may just need someday (so reminiscent of cleaning out my girls’ toys). Just let it go (are you singing now?) and know that you will search and find that pin again if you need it.
If you still are looking for more help on getting started with organization, check out my first tutorial. It was my very first attempt with Screencastify, so I apologize at the length. I am going to working on being more concise (I really like to go on and on…can you tell?).
Next step is to follow me on Pinterest (still a work in progress). I do know about Pinterest accounts for business, but I am not ready to go that route just yet. So feel free to follow only my education boards that interest you and ignore my recipes, knitting ideas, and Disney World tips (I love Disney). Share your accounts in the comments, so I can follow you back!