Put a Pin In It When speech-language pathologist Jenna Rayburn was in graduate school at The Ohio State University, she was charged with treating and engaging children as part of a literacy internship. But she was given no budget or materials. So, being the resourceful sort, she made her own materials—everything from positional concept Easter ... Get Social
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Get Social  |   May 01, 2012
Put a Pin In It
Author Notes
  • Kellie Rowden-Racette, print and online editor for The ASHA Leader, can be reached at krowden-racette@asha.org.
    Kellie Rowden-Racette, print and online editor for The ASHA Leader, can be reached at krowden-racette@asha.org.×
  • Maggie McGary, ASHA social media manager, can be reached at mmcgary@asha.org.
    Maggie McGary, ASHA social media manager, can be reached at mmcgary@asha.org.×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / School-Based Settings / Professional Issues & Training / Telepractice & Computer-Based Approaches / Normal Language Processing / Get Social
Get Social   |   May 01, 2012
Put a Pin In It
The ASHA Leader, May 2012, Vol. 17, online only. doi:10.1044/leader.GS.17062012.np
The ASHA Leader, May 2012, Vol. 17, online only. doi:10.1044/leader.GS.17062012.np
When speech-language pathologist Jenna Rayburn was in graduate school at The Ohio State University, she was charged with treating and engaging children as part of a literacy internship.
But she was given no budget or materials.
So, being the resourceful sort, she made her own materials—everything from positional concept Easter eggs to using the Sunday shopping ads to work on auditory comprehension skills. During that time she developed a blog to keep track of all the projects and materials she created so she could share them with other SLPs in the same situation.
And then, last year when Pinterest—a new content-sharing service that allows users to “pin” images, videos, and links—emerged, Rayburn saw a whole new way to showcase and organize her ideas. She started her own board called “Speech Room News,” and began following other similar boards. At the beginning of March, Speech Room News had more than 2,000 followers and the number has been growing steadily ever since.
“Pinterest has been so inspiring to me because every day there is a new wave of information and ideas,” Rayburn said. “If you’re stuck for a project idea, all you have to do is go there, and it does all the work for you. It’s awesome and, even better, it’s free.”
Rayburn isn’t the only SLP to have harnessed the potential of this newest social media darling. Overall, Pinterest has 12.4 million monthly active users and continues to expand. Although the most popular topics are related to food and fashion, there is a noticeable number of SLPs popping up and pinning treatment ideas. One of the most prominent pinners is PediaStaff, which has almost 15,000 followers and is ranked as the 35th most-followed Pinterest board. Also notable is that within a month of establishing its account, ASHA had 756 followers and now has more than 1,100 followers.
Why is Pinterest so appealing? For one thing, it’s visual—so it’s easy to identify your interests quickly. Each account is a collection of “boards” chosen by the account holder. By default, Pinterest sets new users up with boards like “stuff I love” or “books to read,” but you can edit board names as well as add new boards or delete unwanted ones. It also allows users to organize visually the ideas or items they find online.
If you find other boards that have similar ideas, you can follow those boards and “like” or repin their ideas. Pinterest is visual—some liken it to paging through glossy magazines full of appealing photos—which probably accounts for the staggering number of wedding, fashion, and food images on the site, as well as for the predominantly female user demographic. According to the Nielsen Company, 55% of Pinterest users are women.
Liz Gretz, an SLP at Boone Elementary School in Austin, Texas, who also has a speech blog and an associated Pinterest board (“Speech Lady Liz”), agrees that it’s the strong visuals that keep her coming back.
“The visual aspect is key. All of these ideas lead back to some websites I wouldn’t have found otherwise,” Gretz says. “And once you are on there, there are all of these creative ideas that I can translate into speech. My guilty pleasure is watching TV and pinning. It’s kind of like a disease.”
Some Road Rules
Although it’s easy to get caught up in the pretty pictures and go on a free-for-all pinning spree, there are a few points of Pinterest etiquette. The most important tip is to link back to the source of anything you pin. For example, don’t just pin the photo of a cute project that someone made in class. Link back to the source (blog post, article, etc.) that explains how to use the project or create the project in the context of speech treatment. Pinterest even requests that if you ever notice a pin that is not sourced correctly to leave a comment so the original pinner can update the source.
Another thing to note is Pinterest’s terms of service and copyright and trademark guidelines. Pinterest has been a source of consternation in the photography community in particular, because until it recently changed its terms, users pinning photographs were granting Pinterest ownership of and license to monetize that content. Just as with any other social networking site, the images you post on Pinterest are public, so posting photos of children in a treatment or classroom setting without parental permission is not advisable.
Finally, the third rule is one that applies to every other type of social media: Don’t post anything offensive. Pinterest has indicated that private boards are coming soon, but right now, all boards—and the material posted on them—are public and visible to anyone. Although some people have opted to create completely separate accounts for their professional pins, many times a speech board is just one board on an account —sitting next to other boards showcasing personal design ideas, fashion trends, or recipes, all with the account holder’s personal comments. So is it a good idea to show a photo of bachelorette parties gone wild? Probably not. As Rayburn indicated, she always pins using her personal filter.
“My motto,” she says, “is that if your mom shouldn’t see it, you shouldn’t have it up there.”
Join In

Access to Pinterest is invitation-only. If you’d like an invitation, send an e-mail to community@asha.org.

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FROM THIS ISSUE
May 2012
Volume 17, Issue 6