The English Teachers are pinning…

Field Notes

10:00 p.m-10:45 p.m.

Keyword search: High school English

First observations: the pins don’t line up, which makes it a necessity to scroll up and down continually to pay attention to the images and the written content. Very few pictures of humans! The word “stuff” and “printable” is prevalent.

The first pin is called Why I teach Writing Using mentor Sentences in my High School English Classroom. The image shows a graphic organizer with student handwriting. The student appears to have used various color pens within each sentence. The title of the pin is printed beneath the image and in a black space to the left of it. There is a tiny, circular “badge” next to it that says “Making Meaning”. Colors at play, pink, blue, purple, green, black, white. Highlights the world “collaborative”. Has 793 pins and 68 likes. No comments.

To the left there is an pin promoted by IXL. Blue Pin, Language arts for ages 6–16 with a focus on Grammar, writing, vocabulary and more. Image shows a picture of a phone or tablet and parts of speech. The phone appears to be displaying the menu for some sort of game. The ad is very colorful. It has 45648 pins, 4469 likes and 66 comments. The dialogue strand is pretty wild — several teachers think this looks “fun”, and several students chime in to warn them against it. Some of the comments are pretty passionate. Dissatisfied students call it “boring”, “a waste of time”, and “ “pointless”. Two separate students talk about how it makes them want to throw their computers at school. They also reference the way that the system scores them unfairly. (screen shot conversation)

The next pin is an image of a flip syllabus. It uses friendly font. Lots of colors. There’s that hipster arrow. Colloquial, friendly language to engage students. Comes from a blog: Image has a little circular badge in lower left corner — similar, visually at least, to the pin I saw earlier tonight. Text that the pinner wrote: High School English Syllabus. Flipbook for big kids. This is my kind of teacher: she likes everything about elementary except for the kids.

Teachers pay teachers- 2$ Reading bookmarks: DURING reading tools for secondary ELA. Helps with pacing. Image is a collage of bookmarks with tiny checkboxes and lines. Images of graphic organizers with text boxes and pencils. Center of collage is a mason jar with bookmarks stacked inside. Jar is wrapped with twine. This looks like one of those wedding crafts. The pinner saved it to a board she titled my 
 TPT store” is this a thing?! This has been pinned three times.

Teachers pay teachers-10$ Writing a Research Paper PORTFOLIO: Grades 8–12 Image is of a spiral bound, rainbow colored notebook with tabs. Each page that’s show includes a rubric. or a check list for student and teacher. This has been pinned 919 times and like 97. This is the second TPT post that uses all caps — is that part of their visual cue to possible customers?

7 Bell-Ringer Ideas to Start you r Middle and High English Class — image is framed by bright purple, with white font. Rows of empty, fancy-ish lime green office chairs (I never taught in a school with those!) no kids, not papers on desk. 2070 pins, 127 likes. This comes from has two comments that were made in support of the post several weeks apart. There’s another circular badge. This must be a blog thing?

Here’s one for desk towers. I’ve been observing for 30 minutes and so far, no images of humans. This image is a really clean, empty classroom set up in pods. There are plastic containers holding supplies. This has garnered 1243 pins and 118 likes. This comes from the website and was pined to a board called “Thinks for the classroom….:)”

Here’s another one from It’s an image of a uses bright green and neon green. The font says Social Media Slip Ups: editing spelling punctuation and grammar errors in social media updates. Free download. The circular badge. Pinned to a board called “Education”

Black and gray image, all font based: High School English Teacher Blog Free Stuff; Ideas and Solutions. From 369 pins and 28 likes


I need to think through:

  • how to mark when I click on a link in my notes, how to decide when and when not to do this
  • what constitutes the image? what components am I paying attention to?
  • to pin to my own board or to take screen-shots? there is a chance that when I pin, the algorithm changes and my “pinning” influences what I see.
  • it might be interesting to follow a couple of Boards — who is pinning these things, what else are they pinning? how does this board represent a teacher identity?