Last week, I attended a meeting with educators across my district. The meeting was definitely mentally exhilarating, as the educators involved were hand-picked by administrators to develop the technology standards our district will follow. In Montana, we do not have any statewide technology standards, so we are using the ISTE standards to assist us. The process is going to take some time, and as an educator, I already feel pressured time-wise.
I was relieved to find out that this week’s focus in EdTech501 was content curation. The ways we can implement the ISTE standards are vast, and districts throughout the U.S. have already done great things. I decided to use a variety of curation tools to explore our primary ISTE standard focus, digital citizenship.
I asked myself a variety of questions to determine what kind of content curation tool I wanted. I knew I wanted an online curator. I also knew that I wanted other people to be able to contribute to the curation. I explored Pinterest (already very familiar), list.ly (no familiarity), paper.li (no familiarity), and Flipboard (minimal familiarity). Pinterest, to me, feels too much like personal social media, so I knew I didn’t want to professionally put the content out there. I think my colleagues would find it too “social media” as well. List.ly started off seeming like an interesting format, but I frequently ran into issues where I had to switch browsers to sign in. This became frustrating, and also made me wonder how it would function in a professional setting. I had the same browser issues with paper.li, but I also found that I had to manually add the content. In addition, both list.ly and paper.li had minimal “free” tools. I’m not interested in purchasing a content curation membership at this time.
The final tool I perused was Flipboard. I already use Flipboard to review content related to my colleagues WordPress accounts, but I had not attempted to create my own magazine. I absolutely can say that Flipboard was so easy to use. I searched for “digital citizenship” and found numerous articles pertaining to my topic. I could pick and choose what I wanted to curate, and it automatically formatted the page for me. It also allowed more than one contributor, which was a major option for me as my ultimate goal was to place the Flipboard link in the Google Classroom we have created for our technology standard development team. I also know Flipboard has an app for mobile and tablet devices, as I already use it.
In summary, I found out that curation tools are a great way to sort content related to specific topics. However, I did find out that not all content curators are created equally. I believe Flipboard is my primary curation tool of choice at this time.