Thursday, July 25

LN 04 - Use Padlet to Break the Ice, Brainstorm, Share ideas and Have Fun!


"Awesomely Simple and Powerful!"
- Zaid Ali Alsagoff



PADLET?
Padlet (early known as Wallwisher) gives you a blank wall, and you can basically put anything you want on it, anywhere. Simple, yet powerful.

It basically empowers people to express their thoughts on a common topic easily. It works like an online sheet of paper where people can put any content (e.g. images, videos, documents, text) anywhere on the page, together with anyone, from any device.

Here is a video tutorial to get you started:



YouTube version:



Yes, you can even use it to present (or curate) learning content. I am not kidding:


POWERFUL?

This is why Padlet is simple, yet powerful:

  • Easy-to-Use
     Simple interface, double click to add posts (or double tap for touch screens), drag and drop, auto save, etc.  WOW!  
  • Instant Collaboration
    Everyone's activity can be seen on the wall instantly. Page reloads is history.
  • Multimedia
    You can add any kind of file/links - videos, images, documents. You can paste links (URLs) to (YouTube) videos (view-able from the wall). Can drag a document from your computer. Can take pictures with your computer devices.  
  • Embeddable
    You can embed a wall in blogs and other websites (How?).
  • Privacy 
    You are empowered to keep the wall(s) private by adding password lock or specific email addresses. You can also moderate posts, by requiring approval by one of the moderators before they show up on the wall for the other readers.
  • Customized URL
    Every wall has an unique URL that you can give out. You can now also customize the ending of your URL to your Wall (E.g. http://padlet.com/wall/myawesomewall) or your Domain URL (E.g. http://myawesomewall.com ).
  • Notifications
    You can get e-mail notifications on updates to your wall, or subscribe to them via RSS.
  • Design & Layouts
    You can easily spice up the backgrounds with all sorts of cool designs and images. You can change your layout to 'Stream' to view group discussions more structured (linear chat like format, with time-stamps of when someone commented).

Check out Padlet's user guide (Knowledge Base) to discover more.


FOR LEARNING?

What about Padlet for learning and teaching?

While you don't need brains to use Padlet, you might need to stretch your imagination to realize how easy and powerful this tool could be to empower and energize collaborative learning experiences. Here are some examples on how Padlet can be used for:
  • Ice breaker to get to know one another (Participants/Students upload photos of themselves and then write one or two sentences for others to get to know them better).  
  • Brainstorming ideas, problem-solving, decision-making, or solutions.
  • Q&A sessions before/during/after a lecture or class.
  • Open-ended (formative) question or reflection sessions, where students all share their answers on the Padlet wall;
  • Noticeboards or making course announcements.
  • Bookmarking and curating resources or video playlists
  • Group/Class/Community Discussions.
  • Adventure and travel maps (field trips). 
  • Developing a website
  • Etc.
Let's not stop there, why not explore Padlet as a potential tool for organizing a student's e-portfolio.

Actually, if we stretch our imagination even further, we could perhaps use Padlet even for an entire class (or even course) from the lecture (or lesson) to the assignment (Full Article):
  1. Lesson/Lecture/Tutorial
    Researching, collecting and curating content for your lesson does not have to be a tiresome task across folders, sites, emails and links.
  2. Group Discussion
    Use Padlet for a group discussion before/during/after a lecture (or class).
  3. Feedback
    Your lecture is coming to an end and you want to take check the students’ understanding of the subject or topic.
  4. Assignments/Projects
    Students can work individually or as groups using Padlet. For example, each group sets up a wall that discusses or visualizes their project, which can later be made available to the other students when completed. You can even make it a competition!
Whether you want to use Padlet for everything in online learning is probably a bit extreme, but no doubt this tool can be used in many creative ways to engage learners and have some fun while learning takes place.


ALTERNATIVE TOOLS?

If you want an alternative tool to teach a class or share digital content with activities, I would probably recommend Edcanvas (for now), which provides more structure, control, features and even provides a quiz engine with reporting.

If you want a dedicated tool for collaborative bookmarking or social curation of online resources, I  would recommend Pinterest or Scoop.it instead. 

Though, if you want a simple and powerful tool to easily break the ice (of new group), brainstorm, share ideas and have some quick fun...Padlet is my tool to the rescue :)

1 comment:

Jik Kam Yong said...

Nice! An interesting tool!
I'll probably keep this for when I move to an urban school. It used to be kids innovated with murals & noticeboards but since they spend so much time online nowadays, why not get them to innovate on a virtual wall?
Thanks, Zaid!