LiveBinders is a platform for organizing and sharing information, but you can use it for more than just aggregating data and passing it on. LiveBinders has many applications as an intentional learning tool and it’s all in the tabs.
The technology (or what are my powers?)
The LiveBinders tool allows you to create an eBinder. Like its tangible counterpart, an eBinder allows you to collect information into tabbed sections. The content you put into a binder tab is generally accessed via linking. You add a LiveBinder It button to your browser and as you find Web site content to include, simply click on the button to initiate the process.
How to create your binder using LiveBinders
This short video walks you through the basics of binder creation.
Pluses and minuses
One of the pluses of LiveBinders is the ability to create tabs or subtabs that allow learners to access different types of media. For example, a learner can view a video by selecting one tab, a worksheet (e.g., a pdf) by selecting another tab, and Web resources by selecting still other tabs or subtabs. The ability to share LiveBinders is also a great feature. You can provide a link to your binder or embed a thumbnail of your binder on a Web page.
There are some limitations on how media can be added to binders. Right now, you can’t upload images directly, you have to link to them from Flickr. In my hands that process was a little buggy. There’s also limited formatting you can do when you create a text page. However, it looks like the platform’s evolving and you can provide feedback via an email link.
Of course, it’s not the platform, it’s the way you use the platform that makes it a learning tool. To create more intentional learning experiences using LiveBinders, take advantage of the text layout and subtabbing features provided when you access the edit menu. You can use the text layout feature to include a reflection or guidance page at the beginning of each tabbed section.
Adding subtabs allows you to organize related resources within a tab, which encourages thinking about the relationships between resources.
Learners can use LiveBinders to:
- create ePortfolios that include both artifacts and reflections
- demonstrate how to solve a problem (e.g., providing instruction on a first page and how-to videos and other information on subsequent pages)
- learn by teaching (e.g., collecting information on a subject and using a reflection page to describe how the information ties together and how it can be used)
Instructors also can use LiveBinders to introduce a project- or problem-based learning assignment by including an introductory worksheet as a tab and resources for completing the project or solving the problem in subsequent tabs. The learners would be tasked to create their own binders as they further define a problem and identify potential solutions.
Here are two examples of LiveBinders I created quickly to demonstrate how you can use the platform for problem-based learning.