Padlet: The Online Bulletin Board
Type of technology: Padlet, a web-based program
SAMR Model Rating: Substitution
Grade level: 6-12
Subject area: Any
Padlet is an online bulletin board where students can share ideas or chime in about a topic, image or concept. Teachers can adjust the wallpaper, format, and privacy settings to meet the needs of the task. Use Padlet to create class brainstorms, response posters, or even a quick exit ticket to assess student learning. Most effectively, Padlets can be embedded into teacher blogs and EDU/NEO welcome pages as a way to maintain a record of class discussions. Students can even respond to a Padlet embedded on your webpage as a homework assignment. No student logins are necessary — just a link to the Padlet you’ve created.
PREP: I went to www.padlet.com to create an account for myself. I signed in using my Google Account and uploaded Padlet to Google Chrome. This is free and creates a Padlet icon at the top of my page for easy access. Creating a Padlet is simple. There are a few options for changing the wallpaper, adding a file or image, adjusting privacy settings and making sure the format is how you want it. Otherwise, there aren’t a lot of bells and whistles. Simple concept — simple construction.
Once I created a Padlet for my assignment, then I made a copy of it for each class period and named each Padlet separately. This allowed me to assign each specific Padlet to my EDU/NEO welcome-pages for each period (see image), and allowed students to have a record of the discussion that occurred in their specific class period.
Padlet offers several options for sharing: on social media sites, embedded to your blog site, embedded to WordPress using the Padlet Shortcode Plugin, and even a QR code. Convenience seems to be a priority for this application.
- Students wrote a response to a prompt, shared in groups, and composed a group list of ideas on paper.
- Then, one student for each group logged on to EDU and accessed the Padlet for their class period. They were then instructed to double-click on the wall and type their group name and response, in this case, their list of ideas.
- I mirrored the Padlet on the television for students who were not looking at the laptops.
- Within minutes, our class brainstorm appeared before our eyes. I used my computer to move their responses around and moderate the activity.
- When groups were finished posting, I was able to conduct a class discussion using the responses posted on the television. The activity was quick and efficient.
- Best of all, we could look at the Padlet on a later date, as it was posted on EDU/NEO for parents and students to view. NOTE: After the activity, I changed the privacy setting for each Padlet so students could see the document, but could no longer post or move their posts around.
How can you use Padlet in your classroom?
- Brainstorming activities (like the one posted above)
- Group posters, in which students respond to a quote, text or image
- Exit tickets, to assess student learning
- Discussion threads, with an alternative look and format
- Group tests or informal assessments
Padlet is a great, easy-to-use substitution for anything you normally do on a whiteboard that gets erased at the end of the day. How can you resist?