16. Share Resources Publicly | Guide

Anita R. Walz

Resources shared with a limited audience, however excellent they are, are limited in value because they are not findable. They lack access by a broad audience. This section describes rationale for public sharing of openly-licensed resources and a list of selected places and methods by which to share. If you created something you think is helpful to one person, why not share it more publicly so that others who are looking for the same material might also benefit?

Learning Objectives

Learners should be able to:

  • Be able to articulate hosting options to your collaborative partner.
  • Be able to articulate options for indexing to your collaborative partner.
  • Reflect on sharing.


  1. Read through the chapter and explore the links within.
  2. Document the available hosting options for the school or school district with which you are partnering, including broadly-available authoring tools like open author tools in OER Commons or MERLOT, or creating and sharing publicly via an LMS. Are digital preservation and/or stable links a priority for any of these hosting options? How does one submit materials, or create an account and submit materials? How publicly available are such resources?
  3. Document the existence of state or province-level link-sharing sites, such as OER Commons Microsites or Hubs. Describe the requirements for joining, criteria for submissions, and the steps for submitting materials. What credentials are required or used to create an account?
  4. Document, submit, and implement your plan for sharing your resource with a broader audience.
  5. Write a 1-2 page reflection: As you work with your school and/or district, what themes do you notice regarding administrator or teacher response to the invitation to share publicly? Why do you think this is? If there is resistance, how might you address the issues being raised?

A Guide for Sharing

Why Share?

If something works well in a classroom, the documentation of that activity and/or learning resources may be of value to another teacher. The learning resources are of even more value when they bear an open license, thus allowing others to customize the resources to fit their classroom specific needs.

Enabling Others to Discover Your Work

There are several things teachers/authors/adopters may do to make their openly-licensed resources more findable and usable by others. These include:

  • How you describe the material
    • Descriptive abstract regarding the intended use of the materials
    • Standards alignment
    • Lesson plan for how to use the materials and in what order
  • Host your material where it can be:
    • Indexed,
    • Crawled by search engines, and/or
    • Where people are looking for such resources
  • Raising awareness of the existence of your resource(s)
    • Telling others about your work via formal and informal information channels
      • Teacher associations and conferences
      • School newsletters and newspapers
      • School district social media
    • Leveraging partner communication channels
      • University–School partnership networks and listservs

Aside from informal one-to-one sharing, the best places to share openly-licensed resources are the places where people are looking to find such materials.


Publicly-available electronic versions of learning materials are always “hosted” somewhere, whether that be in OpenAuthor in OER Commons, an Institutional Repository at a university in your state or province, in an LMS, GoogleDrive, or some other site which “serves up” content for public view.

Note: There are many other places to host openly-licensed content. In terms of longevity, it may be helpful to host your content in more than one place. As platforms become obsolete, links break and content becomes unretrievable. University repositories generally implement digital preservation methods to prevent broken links when upgrading their technologies. Some but not all hosting environments do this as well.

Sharing Hosted Resources

Once you have a stable, long-term publicly available place to host your content, you may wish to also have it indexed in a variety of “referatories” by submitting the link and description of the item. See the selected list of places to share below.

  • You may also want to share your resources via a state or province OER Commons Microsite or Hub or other state/province-level open repository or sharing site.
For example, the Virginia Department of Education funds #GoOpenVA, an OER Commons-cloud-based microsite for PreK-12 materials at GoOpenVA (https://goopenva.org). Click here to read more about the VA DOE’s support for the #GoOpenVA program[1] [Archive].

As of the time of publication:

There are various other platforms and hosting options. Several platforms are discussed in the 2017 recording “Seven Platforms You Should Know About: Share, Find, Author, or Adapt Creative Commons-Licensed Resources” http://hdl.handle.net/10919/76739.

  1. GoOpenVA. (2022). Open Educational Resources. Virginia Department of Education. https://www.doe.virginia.gov/teaching-learning-assessment/k-12-standards-instruction/goopenva
  2. Walz, Anita. Personal communication with Mindy Boland 05.27.2022


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Making Open Educational Resources with and for PreK12 Copyright © 2023 by Anita R. Walz is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.