Thursday, December 6, 2012

5 Reasons why you should be using Livebinders




If you follow me on Twitter or Google +, you know how much I LOVE Livebinders.  It is a website that I visit on a daily basis and regularly update my resources on. Thus, I've decided to list the top 5 reasons why you should be using Livebinders.  

1. Professional Development:

I can honestly say that if it had not been for Livebinders, I would be no where near the level of professional development that I am now.  Livebinders is the first 21st century educational technology that got me hooked into finding educational tools and learning how to use those in the classroom.  I had a job interview at a school a few months ago and I explained Livebinders to the Social Studies department head--who had never heard of it before.  As I finished telling him about it, he literally started walking out of the room to get his computer to check it out!  (of course he didn't, but you can see his excitement).  Livebinders.com provides a means for anyone, for the purpose of this post a educator, the means to collaborate with someone who is thousands of miles away.  I personally had the privilege of collaborating on a "Cyberbullying" livebinder with Jen Petras--a technology teacher in Ohio.  To put this in the realm of all things, I live in TX and she lives in OH!  The fact that you can collaborate with someone that easily is reason enough to get a livebinders account.  To add a collaborator to your livebinder, all you do is email them a link and the both of you can start adding content to the same Livebinder!  Here's our livebinder, please feel free to view:

  
P.S. Jen is a fantastic educator and I've learned quite a lot from her.
  
2. One stop collection of ALL your resources

Ever actually "shopped" around at all the different websites for data collection?  If you haven't, you'll be celebrating your 100th birthday by the time you get to the last page of search results.  Livebinders gives you the freedom of having to have 500 web resources for collecting all your documents, web clippings, etc.  If you are a teacher, that fact that you can create a class livebinder and embed it on your class site/blog should be a dream come true.  There's no more questions like "Can I get a copy of last weeks assignment?" or "Where is your notes from the lecture?"  Just direct them to your livebinder where you've uploaded your materials and they can print it/save it when/where they need it.  

3. Connection to other Educational Resources

Again, if you follow me on Twitter or Google Plus, I'm a HUGE advocate of Evernote and Study Blue.  With Livebinders, I've been able to collect resources and share them (via Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook, etc) on Evernote and Study Blue.  Had it not been the advent of Livebinders, there is no way I could gather all the resources that I have gotten and been able to share them with the world about Evernote and Study Blue.  Educators should keep themselves up to date on educational resources and the fact that Livebinders help you gather resources on them and narrows down your search for content about them is priceless.  Here's my Livebinders on Evernote and Study Blue:


  
  
Evernote for Educators

4. Livebinders save you time

Who doesn't have time to spend countless hours on the computer searching for content?  If you do actually have that kind of time, then your job probably doesn't call for you to search for resources in the first place.  Again, for the sake of this post, in the case for teachers Livebinders.com can help you get resources in a flash. For example, let's say you have a interest on how to use an Ipad in your classroom.  On the search tool on the website, simply type "Ipad" and hit "search".  As of the creation of this post, this will give you over 300 livebinders over Ipads themselves!

5. It's Free!

Would you rather pay a website for all these features or would you rather get it for free?  Correct, you answered "free"!  And if you are always looking for free resources, you're probably thinking, "ok, here comes the solicitation ads!", but, not in this case.  Livebinders does not have ads that will pop up on your screen telling you that you are the 1 billionth customer and you've just won the state of Rhode Isand, or ads that clutter up the binder themselves.  The fact that Livebinders give you all this great material and resources at the touch of your fingertips and for free is nothing short of remarkable.

I would like to think the creators of Livebinders, Tina and Barbara, for making such a awesome tool.    As soon as the economy turns back around and I find a teaching job, you can rest assured that I will have my students using Livebinders!