Google+ Communities provide the perfect place to communicate directly with students (while still allowing a level of privacy, based on the settings you choose), allowing you to share classroom resources, answer questions, and post announcements. These communities can also be a useful place to interact with parents, as a way to keep them in the loop about upcoming activities, and what is going on in your classroom. One advantage of Google+ Communities is that users do not need to add each other to their circles (Google+’s version of adding a ‘friend’), so no one needs to see any other personal information as when using outlets like Facebook.
Twitter is a great resource for students, as well as a platform to practice their own writing skills. I’ve mentioned several great uses for Twitter in my series here, but it can be used for the obvious by following important historical or political figures, as well as tracking specific hashtags that are current or relevant. Additionally, you can use it as great vocabulary practice by tweeting out words for students to define or explain, share daily or weekly puzzles with students, or conduct an online book club.
Pinterest is a great visual tool for you or your students to share what you’ve been working on, or to brainstorm ideas for an upcoming project, or for students to curate sources as they are working on a group project (collaborative boards work great!).