Sheninger, E. (2010, August 28). Personal learning networks 101. Retrieved from http://connectedprincipals.com/archives/723
A Personal Learning Network or PLN is a collection of resources that will help you to be more efficient as a teacher. I think Eric Sheninger speaks of PLN's perfectly when he states that, "The construction of a PLN enables educators to harness the power inherent in 21st Century technologies in order to create a professional growth tool that is accessible whenever, wherever... [it] provides me with a constant supply of resources, thought-provoking discussions, knowledge, leadership strategies, and ways to successfully integrate technology (Sheninger 2010)". By using Twitter, Diigo and The Educators PLN I was able to connect with others and build my PLN, which will help me by allowing me to access information from other more experienced professionals.
Twitter is an online social networking tool that allows users to follow each other and their status updates as live, streaming feeds. I use Twitter to connect with a community of education related professionals. By following these people or groups, we can collaborate and discuss current happenings in education and work toward the goal of making education the best it can be. In addition to following all of my peers from my CSUSM ed tech class, I also started following some other people that I felt would be great resources for me, including:
- @sharemylesson, this user is committed to sharing the best resources for teachers, by teachers.
- @inquirebook, this serves as a guide for 21st century learning
- @tesnewteachers, the ultimate resource for advice and support for new teachers
- @mindshiftKQED, explores the future of learning, covering cultural and tech trends and innovation in teaching
- @HASTAC, a network of networks a virtual organization committed to rethinking the future of learning
Diigo is a social-bookmarking tool that allows users to sign in and access their bookmarks from any computer, as well as share their bookmarks with others. In addition, diigo allows you to go in an highlight important parts of your bookmarks so you remember pieces to use for research papers, memorable resources, or notable statistics. You can also become a member of a community, and follow users just as you would on Twitter. I decided to follow these organizations or individuals because I felt like I could benefit from them the most in my future endeavors as a teacher:
- Stephanie Griffin: I decided to follow her because she is currently working on her Masters of Education and is a future language arts teacher. Her tags seemed to be tags that I relate to and would like to be able to share her resources. Her tags include Teaching with Technology, Inspiration, Writing, Advice..etc
- Phil Taylor: Phil Taylor is the head of Educational Technology at a school in Canada. He says that he explores Diigo because he is exploring the power of social networking and loves the idea of sharing information.
- Cyndi Danner-Kuhm: Cyndi is an educational futurist working to leverage technology for the benefit of learners. Considering I am planning to get my Masters in Ed Tech, I think Cyndi can be a great resource for me!
- Jil Wright: I decided to follow Jil because she is a technology consultant and higher education web pro. I think that ed tech is the future of education and that these users will be highly beneficial for me to have in my PLN
- Peggy George: Peggy is a retired teacher and a Mac enthusiast and is a learner and advocate for Web 2.0
I joined the Educators PLN, which is an ning site dedicated to the support of a Personal Learning Network for Educators. I was also able to add the badge onto my blog so others can follow me. While on the Educators PLN website, I came across an interesting article that I can especially relate to as a future teacher of the arts. Although learning a second language might not be considered an "Art" I do consider it to be a subject that is outside the realm of the core subjects in school: Math, Science, English, and History. The article is called Skills Children Acquire form the Arts That Equips Them for Success in Life. The article basically defends the Arts and why incorporating them into a child's life is very important for their personal development. I realize that with the budget cuts rapidly increasing in the educational sector, some are arguing that school should go back to the core concepts. I agree with this article that the arts are a part of school that some children really need to keep them interested in the classroom.