How I Use It
Padlet is a virtual sticky note platform. In the days before technology, I used a methodology very similar to this virtual platform frequently in my classroom: I would post a question on the board and students would approach with sticky notes and post their response. However, it was hard to create something that could last forever due to space and post its losing stickiness over time. Padlet allows for virtual creation and permanent retention of such an approach to teaching. Furthermore, you are able to use multiple input methods, so students are not restricted to words only. They can post anything from their drive and can post multimedia components as well. Because you can upload your own images and you have a variety of layouts to choose from, you can fully customize your Padlet experience.
I start almost every lesson with a Padlet. I create a probing question and have students respond. At the close of the lesson, they can then revisit and readjust the thinking on their Padlet as needed. I might start off the day with a question about last night's homework, giving me a great starting point for instruction. I might introduce a new rubric and ask what they "notice" about it and use that to guide my conversation and focus. It is great as a word wall for any discipline. I also love the concept of hosting projects in Padlet - have all students upload here because you can pull anything from your drive - and allow them to do their own, individual "gallery crawl". Bonus for the teacher? No more searching through many drive files to find your student responses.
Padlet is a fantastic assessment tool. Because you can post your own background and set up your own template, Padlet could easily become a KWL, a before and after assessment opportunity, a sorting tool (think parts of speech or types of angles), a word wall, a project collection portal, and so much more. The opportunities are as open as your imagination. Students like seeing the different backgrounds and they also like being able to refer back to the posts that were created in class to continue learning from. Your lower level students can input from their ability level and your higher level students can go as far as they would like. It is an easy, comfortable tool that all learners can engage with.