Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Pinning for Parents! One More Way to Communicate!

No matter how much you communicate, it seems like communication is always an area that every learning organization needs or wants to improve. I remember getting phone calls from folks  that would go  something like this:

Parent: I had no idea that the parent night for FAFSA was last night, you need to do a better job of communicating dates like that. How was I supposed to know about it?

Me: I'm so sorry, it was in the paper

Parent: I don't get the paper

Me: Also on the radio and on our website

Parent: I don't listen to that station and I never visit the website

Me: We posted it to our Twitter feed and Facebook page

Parent: I don't use either of those

Me: It was on the sign in front of the school & sent home with your student & on the announcements

Parent: I don't drive by the school and my child doesn't tell me anything

Me: How about from now on, when something important is happening I come to your house and fold your laundry, while you make dinner and personally tell you about it?

Okay, I never really said that last line!

All kidding aside, I'm a parent of 3 kids. My husband and I both work full-time and certainly missed some important dates in our day, life is busy!

So, my motto has always been just communicate, communicate and communicate some more!

Enter Pinterest! I signed up for this tool when it came out in beta and anxiously awaited my invitation via email and when it arrived I quickly began pinning boards like recipes, garage organization, landscaping, knitting patterns etc..I've just never gotten hooked on a bookmarking tool and this one was SO working for me!

Then I had a little "aha moment" as I was talking with some friends who were in LOVE with Pinterest. This group of friends was made up of all women who aren't at all the tech addict that I am. They read books, not on e readers, they don't tweet, their computer is actually still in on a desk in their home and not right beside their chair in the family for immediate & full time access. But they were VERY engaged with this site. The visual aspect worked for them.

So, for me, Pinterest became yet another way to pull in teachers who are reluctant tech users and to reach more parents where they are! You can see ways teachers are using Pinterest in this great post from +Edudemic

I'm wondering how many schools are also pinning for their families and community! Consider boards like:

College Virtual Tours
Financial Aid
Classroom photos
Financial Literacy for Your Child
The Truth About Bullying
Helping Your Child Study
Online Safety
Learning Games
Student work
Project Based Learning explained
Standardized Test Info
Great books (so many sub-topics here, too!)

Pretty much any topic the School Counselor wished they had time to talk to parents and students about!

How are you using Pinterest to communicate with families? Share the link to your board in the comments! We'd love to follow you, follow our boards, too, I pin education resources as New Tech Network

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