This week’s adventure is about using social media in education. Initially, I would not have ranked Flickr among the different social media sites. Yes, it’s a great place to collect images, but I saw it as more of a photo album that you could share with others. As I’ve accessed the site for pics to use in my blog, I found that people were commenting on some of the pictures. Then I began to understand how Flickr could be ranked among the social media.
Using It in Class
Some people have participated in a Flickr group that has people take a new photograph every day and upload it to Flickr for one year. Many of them post what was significant about the experience and what they have learned (Barton, 2012). This could work for a class, too. Students can upload one picture per day of themselves or something important to them and explain why their image is significant. Along the way, they learn about themselves and about their peers.
When I was teaching kids, there were times when I wanted them to search through a group of magazines and find pictures related to a certain subject. For example, when we studied geometry, I wanted them to find pictures of pentagons, cubes, and parallel lines. In Texas history, I might want them to hunt down images related to a major event in Texas such as the Texas Revolution or the Spindletop oil strike.
Flickr can be used the same way, but instead of finding pictures in magazines, students can look for the images in Flickr albums.
A third use for Flickr would be as a story prompt. The teacher or student would locate an interesting image and students could write a paragraph or two that would tell a story, whether true or made up, about the image. Before education became so standard-test driven, I used to use pictures, clip art, or trading cards for that in a language arts center.
What other sorts of ways might you use a photo collection in class?
(c) 2006 Timothy Valentine // Retrieved from Flickr and used unchanged under Creative Commons
Barton, D. (2012). Participation, deliberate learning and discourses of learning online. Language and Education, 26(2), 139-150. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1080/09500782.2011.642880