SchoolArts Magazine

DEC 2014

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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David Gran @ R + Curating with Pearltrees 22 December 2014 SchoolArts contain a file for watercolor, which can contain files for a variety of spe- cific techniques, which can include files of samples, and so on. In addi- tion, Pearltrees allows users to add their own images and files, such as handouts or student work. In the free version you can add up to 1GB of your own content. "Branching" Out Similar to Pinterest, Pearltrees allows users to organize collaboratively. You can invite people to "grow" your tree with you, or you can request collabo- ration on a tree created by someone else. Another advantage—which is absent in other organizational tools— is that you can add other Pearltrees to your own. For example, after organiz- ing a series of "branches" about vari- ous art movements, you can search for trees that collect websites about specific movements and include those entire trees as "branches" of your own. The site will even help find trees like your own. Like other collaborative tools, Pearltrees offers an excellent oppor- tunity for student engagement. Once you've established the "trunk" of T here seems to be no end to the online curating tools that have appeared over the last couple of years, each offering a new way to share and organize infor- mation. Diigo ( ) and Delicio. us have long been the standard-bearers for organizing links by tags. Pinterest ( ) later arrived, allowing you to visually organize your informa- tion. Livebinders ( ) allows you to actually embed websites and videos into the stacks that you create, giving you the ability to reach all of your information with one less click. Pearltrees In its new version, Pearltrees ( pearl- ) offers both visual orga- nization akin to Pinterest, and hierarchical organization similar to Livebinders, making it an interesting option for the organized art teacher. Although you can't embed actual web- sites like you can with Livebinders, Pearltrees has one distinct advantage: Users can create infinite levels of hier- archical information. These stacks of information, called "trees," allow you to organize information in increas- ingly specific categories. For example, your file for media and materials can contain a file for painting, which can your tree, you can invite your students to grow the tree with you, adding the sites and resources that they find use- ful. Finally, one nice advantage to using Pearltrees is that you can integrate it into your existing class website. By clicking the "share" button, you can copy an embed code to use on an external site. The embedded tree will not only appear on the site, but will work interactively within it. In this way, you can access all of your orga- nized content from within your class blog or website. David Gran teaches high-school art and film classes at the Shanghai American School in China and is the author of The Carrot Revolution, a blog about twenty- first century art education, carrotrevolu-

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