Online portfolios are not only about documenting, reflecting upon and presenting your work. For them to really become a living tool for students, they also need to be a place of “on going” work. If the portfolio can be the place where actual work is being created then the portfolio becomes a part of the ongoing learning.
One of the apps that I have begun to play around with allows for this kind ongoing creation. Paper by Fifty Three is just one of those apps. I like it because it is an app that allows for drawing, writing and a version of water color painting. It has the potential to be used both to “plan” and for more creative final work. In the drawing below I made a drawing of a possible automata design (we are building automata toys in my class). This kind of sketching is something that I do with my students on paper, but Paper is an app that would allow you to use an ipad instead. This drawing can then be sent to Evernote. Once it is in Evernote it can be retrieved and looked at again when students are actually in the building phase.