Managing the Twitter Information Overload

When I first started teaching 19 years ago, the only way of getting hold of any good resources being used by other schools was to meet with staff from these schools, find out what they were doing, and try and blag a copy (often in paper format).

Things are a little different now. I follow around 750 people on Twitter. A few random footballers, news sites and friends aside, the majority of those that I follow are other teachers across the globe. Teachers who share and retweet a wealth of information every minute. I regularly catch sight of a tweet linking to a resource or an article about which I want to find out more. The problem is, these tweets often appear at the least opportune moments: whilst I’m stuck on a bus with a poor 3G signal; whilst I’m watching the football; or when skimming my timeline in the morning while grabbing breakfast. Until recently I have been using Evernote to capture these tweets, but although Evernote is a great note-taking tool, I find that it is a bit cumbersome for this purpose. I also find that once a link has been stored in Evernote, it tends to get buried away within a notebook never to be seen again.

I’ve recently changed my workflow to make use of two applications which I think are better suited to capturing and organising useful content from Twitter (and indeed the web in general): Pocket and Pinterest.  I have Pocket installed on my phone, tablet and PC and it’s linked to directly from Tweetcaster Pro (my mobile Twitter client). Whenever I see a useful link to a resource or article, I “Add to Pocket” – this is a simple 2 click process which just drops the link into my pocket account. Later, when I have the time, I review the links I have captured using Pocket and I then organise any useful content by saving it to an appropriate board on Pinterest.

 

Why Pocket?  

The thing I like about Pocket is its simplicity. A couple of clicks on a phone or tablet and the link is saved for access at a later time. Pocket visually displays all captured links with an image and summary text making it much easier to review items of interest.

 

Why Pinterest

I started using Pinterest about a year ago but didn’t really see any value in it at that time. I’ve recently reorganised my Pinterest account with boards that work for me and now I can see its benefit. Pinterest pins are thumbnail images combined some user defined summary text describing the captured resource/article. This makes the layout of each Pinterest board easy to read, and critically makes it much easier to find things. Pinterest boards are public, and so it’s easy to share either a pin or an entire board with others.

I am still working on organising much of my saved content on Pinterest, but for reference my Pinterest boards are:

Edtech Tools

Online Maths Resources

Using technology to support learning

Android apps for education

Apple apps for education

Learning

Maths projects

 

 

Twittter logo by Felix Schmidt (licenced under Creative Commons 3.0)

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