A lot or a little?
Parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Flipboard is a website that allows users to create their own print-style online magazines using content from the Web. They can bookmark any page and add it to their magazine, which ends up being a collage of different Web pages on the same subject. It's fun, but it's really best used on a tablet or phone, as the Web version is missing some important stuff. Kids may be frustrated by the Web version's lack of a search option; it makes it hard to browse magazines created by other people. On the plus side, they can't deliberately search for swear words, sex, or other inappropriate content, so they're less likely to come across it.
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What's it about?
FLIPBOARD allows you to create an online magazine built from Web pages you like. You begin by downloading the Flipboard app onto a phone or tablet. Once you return to your computer, you can add the Flip It bookmarklet to your bookmarks bar. When you browse the Internet and find content that interests you, click the Flip It button. A window will pop up that allows you to add that page to a magazine. You can create a magazine on the spot or add to one you've been working on. There's an option to post your activity to Facebook at this point, which would allow other people to visit your magazine.
There isn't a search function on the website, so browsing is the main way to view content. To browse, click on one of the headings, which include Arts & Culture, Big Ideas, Sports, and News.
Is it any good?
It seems like Flipboard really wants people to use the app version as opposed to the Web platform; the latter doesn't have the same functionality. You can't even create an account on the Web -- you have to sign up through the app, and then you can log in on a computer, which is a hassle. However, the magazine format is really nice, the photography shines, and there are tons of well-curated topics to browse. The content, however, does have some issues. Although the website is safer than the app (you can't search for inappropriate content), kids have the whole Internet to choose from when creating their Flipboard magazines. With no regulations, kids could see or add anything that's online, making Flipboard best for highly supervised situations or for mature teens.
Talk to your kids about ...
Ask your kids: "If you could publish your own magazine, what would it be about? Who would write for it? How would you get people to buy it?"
Families can talk about magazines: How are they different from books? What's fun about reading a magazine, either online or in print?
- Subjects: Language & Reading: reading, using supporting evidence, writing
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: applying information, collecting data, thinking critically
Creativity: combining knowledge, producing new content
Responsibility & Ethics: following codes of conduct
Tech Skills: digital creation, social media, using and applying technology
- Genre: Creating
- Price: Free
- Pricing structure: Free
For kids who love creating
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