Let's talk a bit about Flipboard and other personal magazines like News on the iPhone and iPad. They rock. You can set up your own personally curated digital magazine that includes the latest and greatest articles about the topics in which you are most interested, for free. Why have to cull through the thousands and thousands of online articles to find the things that you most want to read when you can set up a way to see only topics you want to see? I read my Flipboard almost every day for various reasons:
I get to read what I want to read
I want to share the latest and greatest with my students on the topics I teach
I don't have to search for topics online and get distracted by other information
I don't have to subscribe to RSS feeds or email newsletters
I can read my magazine whenever I am ready to
I can share articles I like directly to social media and email
I get help to curate information to share on social media and therefore attract others with similar interests
How I use Flipboard in the classroom
In my Video Storytelling class I had my students create their own personal flipboards by either downloading the app for their smart devices, or creating an account on their laptops. Each student was then asked to choose a few general topics that they were interested in. I also asked students to choose several topics around filmmaking news, videography and camera equipment. Once a week, at the beginning of class two-three students were expected to present a 1-minute summary about an article that answers these three questions:
In this way, each presenter got to teach some new information to the class and we all got to learn something new about the video industry. Presenters were chosen randomly each class period, which meant that every student had to have read an article and be ready to present each week. This kept students reading on a weekly basis and getting used to connecting with current events. I told them that I would not be working my way down the list of students systematically and that some students would present more than once before we got to all students. I put their names on cards and randomized the pick of the names. My goal was to have every student present at least twice in the year, but they would never know when.
When I showed one student how to curate articles that included his interests in addition to the articles about film making, he picked topics that included sports, particularly around football. Every class period thereafter, I had to ask him to put away his reading in order to get his work done in class, a wonderful problem to have, especially when reading was just not his "thing." He told me it was my fault that he was now addicted to Flipboard and that he couldn't stop reading. He eventually branched out to other topic such as the news, politics and cars.
"He told me it was my fault that he was now addicted to Flipboard and that he couldn't stop reading."
If you have an iphone or ipad, there is another app built right into the device called "News" that comes installed for you. All you have to do is tell it what topics you want to read about. There is an algorithm that notices which articles you open and tried to give similar articles. Personally, that kind of creeps me out, so I stick with Flipboard, that does not follow my every click, but instead allows me to opt in to things I want to read. But every once in a while I'll open up News and see what there is to read. It's good to get a larger perspective on the world through different news sources.
Lisa Gottfried is a CTE teacher with 20 years experience as CEO of her own Video and Motion Graphics Production house. She currently teaches Intro to Digital Media, Video Production and Game/3D Design. She loves her job and her students!