Why Pinterest made me better at my job.

Have you ever used Pinterest?
(If you answer no, you seriously need to start!!)

I had always heard about Pinterest and I dabbled with it now and again but I never really got into it until I started on TpT. Once I became more hooked on TpT, I started to get more hooked on Pinterest, and after a few wise words from some lovely TpT friends I soon became obsessed.

Like crazy obsessed.

Hand on heart, I believe Pinterest has made me - and everyone in my class - better at our jobs - not in the paperwork way but in the way that we've watched the students enjoy the activities we give them even more than before. I mean the staff in our class have amazing ideas for activities, but Pinterest was a way that we had access to millions of teachers brains and ideas!

So, how do I use it? Well, in two ways because I have two accounts! I have my personal one which is linked to my blog and TpT account and I have one that is just for School.

My personal/TpT one
So, for this one I have a whole range of boards, the first board being all my resources from my TpT and the rest then are boards for grades, topics, seasons, themes etc. You can check out all the boards here.

People always look at me crazy when I say how many boards I have on my personal one - I mean, I even have a board just for home offices! 

But really, it's stuff that interests me, I work in an autistic class with ages ranging from 3-7 but because of their levels of ability it means we don't always work at that age so 'grade/age' boards didn't always work so I wanted to create topic ones too - then seasons etc. I found that when we would have a topic in class such as '3 little pigs' I would spend some spare time at home just scrolling through pinterest on my iPad to find different activities and then started pinning them.

Then, I watched my followers starting to quickly grow and I thought more about what people would want to be able to see - and it was fun yet educational ideas that would work in their class and fit in with themes, so now I spend some time every day finding fun and different activities that would be great for a range of classrooms, plus it means that I get to find lots of new ideas for class too!

It's also given me so many fun ideas on activities to create for class, I mean I can actually browse Pinterest for hours because teachers from all over the World pin their ideas on there - even stuff like classroom management and organisation - you won't believe how many amazing displays are on there!

Another way is home life too - did you realise how many bloggers use pinterest to share outfit ideas? I swear it's transformed my life! I've always tried my best to look trendy but I was not gifted with amazing fashion sense, I can struggle to put clothing items together, so since finding this on Pinterest I've had so much fun finding new outfits - I know that's not really related to getting me better at my job, but seriously it does help!

My School Pinterest
My School Pinterest account is set up purely for what we are doing in class. I have a board for each area of what we will be covering that year and when we get planning time I have quick looks on Pinterest and pin ideas/activities on to the relevant boards then when it comes to the time to do the activities I can just log onto Pinterest, look at the board and see what activity to do/plan!

There are ideas for all areas of learning, seriously, we get cooking, craft and science ideas mainly from Pinterest but there are so many more areas of learning you can cover from just spending a few moments searching!

Plus, it gets better... Pinterest pretty much tracks what you're pinning and then when you sign in the next time, on your home feed they'll provide you with recommendations - I've found some amazing ideas on here! I've often found ideas that I would never have thought to search for.

Having a School Pinterest board is also a great way to send/share ideas with other staff around the School - plus students can have so much fun helping you to search! We have some students who love to sit with us and scroll through Pinterest to find activities to do in the future, it's a great way to involve them with their planning.

The other reason that I love Pinterest is because sometimes, you may just feel in a rut in class, like whatever you're trying you just can't connect with a student in a way to help them learn in their own way - doing some searching on Pinterest can give you so many ideas on other ways you help your students - sometimes, we're so overworked that we just can't think of anything else so it's always great to have some ideas from other teachers!

Do you use Pinterest? If so, how? What for? Do you think it's helped you?
Nikki 

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