Category Archives: Curation

Learnist – a bit like Pinterest and a little bit like Scoop.it

learnist

I might be late to the party, but I’ve just discovered Learnist. It looks a lot like Pinterest so I was excited from the start. It combines a few bests, including images, easy collaboration and sharing and educational content. And, as always, what I really like about it is finding people who take the time to curate quality resources. The excitement is in the lucky dip aspect; I like to search specific things but the unexpected joy of discovering something you didn’t set out to find is what makes this addictive for me.

featuredauthorslearnist

Once you start browsing the categories, you’ll realise how open-ended these are. It’s interesting to see what interests people. I’d like to experiment with Learnist as ‘wider reading’ for students. Wouldn’t it be nice to give them time to browse within a general theme or topic to find something that catches their interest instead of prescribing their focus?

attitudelearnist

Learnist is very user-friendly. As with many social networks, it allows you to browse, rate and comment, as well as find out a little about people and follow them or their boards. Learnist has enough statistics at a glance to give you an idea of whether the board has attracted many viewers or commenters. You can add a suggested site to a board or a tag – very similar to Pinterest and Scoop.it. It’s also easy to share a link with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn or email the link. It would be valuable to create a shared Learnist board with your faculty, or even create a cross-faculty board, or better still, one for the learning literacies we should be embedding across the curriculum, for example, digital citizenship or critical literacies.

Basically, Learnist allows people to learn with and from each other. That’s the way I like to learn. And the mix of text, image, video and audio is a great way to engage learners.

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Seeing things in a new way. Suddenly we are all librarians

Photo source thanks to John

Much has been said about Pinterest. Has it? I’m sure it has. Like other forms of social media, you can always find a broad range in terms of quality. It’s so easy to use and it looks great.  In case you haven’t checked it out, Pinterest allows you to easily ‘pin’ pictures (and videos) to a board. Unlike Scoop.it, you can collect any number of boards which can be named and renamed, and which look great at a glance. So easy to find stuff. Of course, I have too many boards but, hey – many people have even more. But wait! there’s more. As with any form of social media, the best part is finding people and following them, repinning what they’ve collected, and finding more awesome people and resources by looking through whom they follow. But a word of warning – it’s addictive. I mean seriously addictive, particularly if you have a weakness for the visual as I do. Do not, do not, start browsing late at night because you might not get much sleep.

Social media platforms like Scoop.it and Pinterest have given a new look to the curation of resources. Visual layouts are engaging and easy to scan for what you need. The key word is sharing - love it! As a teacher librarian, I’m a finder of sorts, and so these networks are invaluable for me. And enjoyable. My job is to fossick and mine for the jewels amongst an overabundance of mediocre or irrelevant resources, and Pinterest makes it easy to do that.

No longer can librarians boast about their classification skills. So many people are willingly spending enormous amounts of time finding, selecting and classifying images and videos into Pinterest boards for the picking.

Recently I’ve been focusing on images to support the teaching and learning of the Visual Arts, and more specifically, VCE Visual Communication Design. I’ve spent an obscene amount of time doing this so, as a form of justification, I’d like to share these with you. Eventually my goal is to nicely embed these into a Libguide or two but in the meantime I’ll share the links. I’ve chosen people who are experts in the Visual Arts. Some of these are teachers but most work within the field.  My selections are only some of what these people have shared.

Toshio Miyake (graphic designer)
Kent Loven

Marc Sublet (graphic designer)

U Soma (design, branding, communication)

Marcus Hay (Director of Creativity, Styling and Interiors)

Steven Vandenplas (graphic designer)

Dubbu (design, film, collage)

Seeke (illustration, typography, art)

silja p (designer)

Hege Vestbo Saetre (design)

Chris Dangtran (design, typography, photography, products)

Ben Serbutt (designer, art director, illustrator, typography)

Ya-Ting Maggie Kuo (design, infographics, typography)

Johnson Yung (mixed media, abstract, photography, animation)

Joao Henriques (typography, design, packaging, infographics)

(collage, photography, design)

Masayuki Nakazawa (director of photography, Tokyo)

Maja Moden (Swedish illustrator)

Folkert Hengeveld (Creative Director at Amsterdam based design firm Formlab)

DOMO-A (graphic design, typography)

Rhian Edwards (graphic design)

Jorge Heilbron (design)

Kazuya Arakawa (graphic design, typography)

Ale casinelli (graphic design)

Zachi Diner (designer)

Frederic Chollet (photography)

Silja p (designer)

Emma Fexeus (designer)

Design Boom – home of design, architecture and art culture

Sayuri Maeda (graphic design)

Galen Lowe (graphic design, architecture, photography)

Robert Melotte (Urban Photographer. Architecture and photography, abstraction of graphic architecture. Melbourne-based)

Maria Rufus (graphic design)

Fernando Baeza Ponsoda (architecture)

Archibald Woo (architect)

Griffen Lim (graphics, architecture, interiors) Melbourne-based

Fosco Lucarelli (architecture, design)

MoMA Design Store

Ryutaro Kishi (graphic design, product design, fashion, photography, typography)

Architizer (everything architecture and design)

Arslog (Contemporary Art, Science, Technology)

Emanuela Marcu (a bit of everything)

Astrid Trobro (art director and web designer)

Paul Waltz (architect, sustainable initiatives)

Ginny Christensen (Director of Digital Arts, California)

Sylvie Wibaut (illustration, photography, graphics, furniture)

Janna Gougeon  (Line, pattern, symmetry)

Doris Cook (photography, mixed media, illustration, diagrams, graphic design, street art and more)

Lelle Laflamme

David Schultz (creative director)

Natalie Lowry (graphic design student)

Art teachers on Pinterest -

Donald Peters

Patricia Schappler (drawing in different media, printmaking and so many more)

Youtube on the Arts (Pinterest board)

Some of the design styles I’ve been looking for (so many people have these categories)

Art Deco
More Art Deco

Art Nouveau

Digital art

Typography by Japanese art director and graphic designer “c ktnon”

There are so many more resources on Pinterest to inspire, and to support teaching and learning in different areas. Here are my Diigo bookmarks for a start, but go ahead and search for your own area of interest.

Concerned about copyright and Pinterest’s terms of service? Here is an article I posted earlier. Who is still unhappy with Pinterest’s terms of service? I’d be interested in hearing from you.

I’ve shared my Pinterest boards before but here they are again.

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Gagging on content, struggling to switch off

Curation is one of the new popular concepts in the education world, particularly amongst librarians. In the same way as some previously trusted platforms for bookmarking content have become disappointing (Vodpod’s takeover by Lockerz) or slightly altered (Delicious), new forms of collecting, organising and sharing content have emerged. Pinterest, for me, as for many others, has proven useful for  easily capturing and categorizing images and videos, for example. Scoop.it has become very popular and a new way to search for educational content (even moreso than Pinterest which is still mainly used for personal collections eg wedding paraphernalia and crafts).
Joyce Seitzinger (@catspyjamasnz) has created an insightful slide presentation entitled ‘When educators become curators’. I particularly like Joyce’s description of the different types of digital curators – Closed Door, Hoarder, Scrooge, National Inquirer, and the Robot, although I haven’t actually met the ‘closed door’ curators, only ‘closed door’ recipients.
I can definitely relate to the idea of ‘gagging on content’ since, I have to admit, I’m addicted to information. As a teacher librarian this should be a positive thing since I’m in the business of curating and disseminating information for teachers. But an addiction is never a good thing and can get in the way of working efficiently or even living the real life. Sadly I’m often one of those people who can’t switch off, who regularly check for Twitter and Facebook updates while I’m out, whose inclination to share things I see and find could be viewed as compulsive. That’s why I’m reading Howard Rheingold‘s Net Smart: how to thrive online - or trying to.
Gagging on content can be managed by curation tools but balancing your life and curbing your desire to drink from the fire hydrant is just as important. And it’s so difficult to resist the temptation to connect to your networks when the conversation is so rich, when the new discoveries are so constant.
And so, if I can resist the temptation to check my phone so often, I might be able to learn from Howard how to develop attention and focus which will help balance my life by cultivating an internal inquiry into how I want to spend my time. Anyone else?
Still, at least if we’re connected we have an inside understanding of what our students feel like when they have to switch off and listen to one teacher for the whole period.

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Libguides, Pinterest and other online stuff

Well, I have to write a post mainly because the vibrating gif is driving me crazy and I feel the need to push it down. What’s happening that I don’t use the blog to reflect any more? Perhaps this is not my reflective phase. Yes, that’s it. I’ve been quite satisfied creating resources and getting to know staff members at my relatively new school. And I have to admit to an obsession – pictures! I can’t stop looking at and saving gorgeous pictures from Flickr and other parts of the web (my groaning Google Reader). Just this week I finally decided to give Pinterest a go. The account has been sitting there for a while – can’t remember exactly how long – and I suppose I’ve been frantically trying to keep up with other things, not least Scoop.it which has taken off in a big way. Also because so many Pinteresters are dominating the place with food and wedding photos. Lovely. But not for me at the moment thanks. Just to give it a go, I created a couple of boards and threw in my YA book trailers as well as some books covers. Yes, not bad, looks great and neatly organised at a glance without having to scroll down too much. Well, woah! Now I have too many boards and possibly Pinterest OCD. Please help me.

Libguides have still got me burning the candle at both ends. Some of my colleagues tell me a don’t have a life. Hmm… (I have a life *she says weakly*) Some of you may understand the obsessive finding/saving/sharing/creating cycle and I blame my PLN for giving me so much of the good stuff. I love my job (have I said that before?) I love finding the good stuff for teachers and students. It’s  like being a conjurer – pulling wonderful and unexpected things from a hat. Reader, if you’re a teacher librarian, please support me here. Don’t you feel the same way?

So, to finish off the post (so that I can keep playing with pictures – it’s a bit like swap cards from my youth), I will share the things I’ve been doing. Some of these you already know but, hang on, I’ve been adding…

Pinterest first:

Book trailers board 

Art Inspiration board (from my Art Does Matter blog)

There are more but I’ve only just started them. The illuminated manuscripts have got me salivating and I will be continuing my obsession until I have a full board.

LibGuides:

Even though it’s called Competition Writing, this resource supports any kind of writing and so is useful to students and teachers of English.

I am responsible for the weekly weblink of interest for the school newsletter, and this week I shared the link to my Digital Citizenship pages (4) into which I added two excellent articles by well-known and respected Australian educators, Chris Betcher (Have you googled yourself lately?) and Jenny Luca (5 reasons why our students are writing blogs and creating e-portfolios). These are under ‘Your digital footprint’ tab which is my favourite section of the resource because it explains the importance of helping students create a positive and responsible digital identity. Don’t go on about the dangers of the internet without balancing this out with a clear and positive direction for digital citizenship. Teachers are still telling me they prefer the things of their time to what kids are using today. Not even kids, what about businesses. Mobile technologies and social media have been taken up by businesses but sadly schools are still pulling back. And I say, that’s all very well but it’s not about you. It’s not about me either, it’s about preparing our students for their future.

I’ve also added things to the Debating LibGuide. This is good for persuasive writing and orals. Take a look.

Of course it’s not secret that I have a particular interest in visual arts. Here’s the link to these guides and don’t forget to look for drop-down arrows.

The French language guides have been growing too.

At the moment we are all taking the wider reading classes for the year 9s. I developed a couple of guides for this. My aim is to help students find different ways of finding what to read by using libraries and social media such as Good Reads – to mention a couple. I threw a whole bunch of book trailers into this page; I hope you find it useful. Please let me know what’s missing.

Well, it’s getting late so I won’t go on. For a change.

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Filed under Curation, Digital citizenship, Teacher librarians

Scooping means curating

                                                           Photo courtesy of CanadianAEh on Flickr

Time is one of our most precious commodities in a fast paced world. This is particularly true for educators, don’t you think? For teacher librarians, curating information and resources and doing it well is more important than ever. Our information management strategies enable us to control the flood of online information, and to connect with others in order to receive and share information.

Scoop.it (beta), a new way of curating online resources for a topic of choice, has sprung up out of nowhere (somewhere, obviously), and it seems that most of the people in my Twitter, Facebook and other networks are giving it a go. At first I thought – what!? yet another thing to keep up with; do I really need to tie myself down to managing more than my existing blogs and bits? But honestly, Scoop.it is probably one of the most effortless ways not only of curating a topic online. You just create a topic, get the button, then ‘scoop’ websites as you see them. The layout is great, magazine-style page, much easier to skim and select than looking through Diigo or Delicious accounts. Personally, I’m looking forward to the day when all information is enhanced by a visual layout; much more user friendly.

The networking part of Scoop.it works really well. I get email alerts when one of my people creates another topic, and then it’s just a matter of having a look to see if I want to follow it. Looking through someone’s list of followed Scoop.its opens up even more topics, so every day I’m discovering new resources. Since people choose areas of interest, they are often experts in resourcing this topic. Developing a personal learning network has never been so important. Networking is a powerful way of having the best and most relevant resources come to you. You can even suggest resources for somebody else’s Scoop.it topic, and then the creator has the choice of accepting or ignoring this.

There is an option of sharing on Facebook and Twitter, and that is often how I am alerted to new topics and links. Of course, tagging makes locating resources easy.

Today on Facebook Karen Bonanno shared the Library Research Services’ Vimeo Channel featuring videos such as School library characteristics that affect student achievement – an excellent series of videos, quite digestible in video form, and I wanted to share these with my library team so I added a post in my school library blog.

Chapter 4: School Library Characteristics that Affect Student Achievement from LRS on Vimeo.

Currently I’ve only created 2 topics:

Apps for learning and What is a teacher librarian - can’t say I’ve put much effort into these. I think you have to get into the mindset of thinking ‘Scoop.it’ as you read and discover things online. However, I have been looking through others’ resources, and I’m happy to say that Scoop.it has turned out to be more than a new gimmick. I suppose you have to give new things a go in order to decide whether they warrant your time and focus.

The Explore tab at the top of Scoop.it takes you to the latest scoops within the topics you follow. Currently I follow 75, and yes, you can’t keep up with everything all the time. Like the fast flowing Twitter stream, you just dip in when you have time or when you’re looking for specific resources.

If you’re using Scoop.it please leave your Scoop.it identity in the comment box. I would love to see what you’ve been curating. It would also be good to discover your favourite topics. Don’t be shy!

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