Flipboard is a tool I’ve had running on my iPhone for a number of years. It’s great because I can tell it what I’m interested in reading about and it finds content for me to read and subsequently share. It’s been a fantastic tool for helping me to sift through all of the wonderful content that drops into Twitter, Facebook, Google plus and on the blogs that I read as well as a great way to introduce me to people or sites that I don’t usually follow but who are writing about things that I am interested in at the moment. It’s helped me to find new people to follow and sites to curate. It’s helped me to develop my skills by showing me where the most relevant advice and knowledge sharing is happening.
I thought I’d share some insight into this tool with you so that you can give it a go yourselves. The great news is it’s an app that’s available for FREE on iOS, Android, Windows and Blackberry; it has all the smart devices covered.
Flipboard has a lot of scope. It is designed so that you can curate content and create magazines for yourself and others to read. It also has some handy shopping features. That’s not really what I use it for. In the spirit of re purposing technology, I use it to bring content to me. Here’s how.
Finding Relevant Articles and Information on the web using Flipboard
Once you’ve downloaded the app, create your account.
As soon as you’ve done so you’ll be prompted to “pick some content to get started” From here you can select from a number of social media sites as well as some topics and keywords. If you click on any of the social media icons you will be prompted to connect your accounts to Flipboard. This means, it will read from your feeds, from the people you already follow and integrate that with the rest of the information it collects for you. You will also be able to use these social media tools from inside Flipboard. You’ll be able to write new posts and tweets which include links to the resources you find.
If the content that’s coming up isn’t specific enough for you then why not add some keywords to your flipboard? Let’s try adding
“Education” . Click the red ribbon that’s located in the top right hand corner of the welcome screen; this will take you to your content editor. Now enter a search term into the search box at the top of the page. Flipboard will show you a number of magazines, blogs and websites that you can add to your flipboard who deal with your key word. The thing I find most interesting though, is the top result. This is usually represented by the Flipboard icon. This represents a search for any content (be that in websites, YouTube or social media), content that you might not know about. This is how I find new people to follow, new sites to read.
To explore the options presented just choose one from the list. You’ll see a new flipboard which contains the information you requested. If you want to save that to your main flipboard all you need to do is click the white bookmark ribbon in the top left corner. It will then become a tile on your main flipboard.
Swipe up through the pages, ticking on subject areas that interest you. When you’re done you’ll have a flipboard that contains information that is pulled from your social media feeds, popular websites and blogs, other people’s ‘magazines’ and keywords. All content that is relevant and presented in an easy to read way. It reminds me of sitting in bed with the Sunday paper. It’ll be much easier to find relevant new content to grow from and to get excited about.
Once you get going, you have the option to put the information you find into your own magazine, to share with others. What a great way to create a Staff PD Magazine, or even one a magazine of relevant, new articles on a subject you’re studying with your students. A magazine on Australian History, Shakespeare, Romans, Life Cycles, Science, Maths, anything you can imagine and something that your class twitter account could really benefit from 😉
It’s really easy to set your magazine up. When you find some content you’d like to add, simply press the plus icon (found in the bottom right corner). If you already have a magazine going, you’ll simply be asked to click the title of the magazine you’d like to store the article , link or tweet in. If you don’t have one set up, or you’d like to create a new one, just choose “Create Magazine”.
Give your new publication a title, a short but keyword rich description (so that others know what it’s all about) and choose a category. If you want to keep your magazine private then slide the “let everyone see my magazine” option to off. Otherwise, your magazine is available publicly.
There’s a fantastic, more detailed post on the Flipboard site about how to build and share your magazine. It’s well worth a read if this is something you’re considering. There are a lot of possibilities for your students’ too. Imagine asking them to create magazines on the subject they’re currently exploring. What about a Magazine full of recent, relevant posts, articles, resources, videos, blogs (and more) on Romans, Australian History, Adelaide, Life Cycles, Coastal erosion, Shakespeare, Grammar… the possibilities are endless! OR… a Professional Development magazine for your staff.
Anyone using Flipboard already in this way? Why not share a link to your magazines with us?
Anyone using it in another way? Learning is all about sharing and growing from other’s knowledge… Fancy sharing?