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50 Great Ways to Grow Your Personal Learning Network

50 Great Ways to Grow Your Personal Learning Network
Personal learning networks have always existed, but modern technology has put a new spin on how and where we connect with others. These days, personal learning networks, or PLNs, extend far beyond friends, family, coworkers, college classmates, and teachers, and can encompass experts and learners from around the world in just about any given field. Through social networks, email, video, and online chats, learners can connect with and learn from a wider range of people than ever before, yet building a successful PLN that doesn't overwhelm you can be challenging. With so much information out there, it can be hard to know whom to follow, what to read, and how to fit it all into your daily schedule. Here, we offer some tips that can help you not only build and grow a better PLN, but also get more out of the experience and give more back to your online community. The Basics These basics will help you get started with creating and building your PLN. Seek out experts on the web. Useful Tools

How Do I Get a PLN? What is a PLN? Will Richardson was the first person to clearly explain to me about six or seven years ago what a PLN was. Back then, PLN stood for Professional, or Personal Learning Network. A better label today, one that might quiet the nitpickers, is Personalized Learning Network -- the shift in nuance maintains that participants are both personal and professional learners. A PLN is a tool that uses social media and technology to collect, communicate, collaborate and create with connected colleagues anywhere at any time. Each individual educator becomes a potential source of information. PLNs Develop Thought Leaders Many early adopters of the PLN have gone on to become thought leaders in education, not surprising given that PLNs seem to promote a great deal of reflection and collaboration. Barriers to Mass Adoption There are three deterrents to educators using PLNs as a tool for learning and professional development (PD): We must remember that lifelong learning requires effort.

Step 1: What is a PLN? – Teacher Challenges Welcome to our professional learning series on building a PLN. This series guides you step by step through the process of setting up your own PLN. The aim of this first step is to: Explain what is a PLN.Help you understand why educators create their own PLN. The following information on PLN was co-written by Michael Graffin, a relief/substitute teacher and blogger from Western Australia. You can check out Michael’s original “What the heck is a PLN” post here. What is a PLN? The word “PLN” stands for “Personal Learning Network”, and it has its origins in connectivism theory (Siemens, G. & Downes, S., 2005). Let’s take this a little further… The Personal: Having a PLN is about making connections and building personal relationships with teachers, school administrators, university professors, and experts around the world. The Learning: Having a PLN is about sharing ideas and resources, collaboration, and learning. What is a PLN Video Watch this video to learn more about what is a PLN. Your Task

10 ways to help students develop a PLN… There has been some discussion lately about the precise meaning of the term PLN. I’m not sure why it matters actually. Like any other word in the dictionary (!), it has more than one definition and might mean different things to different people… My PLN is my ‘personal learning network’. As teachers begin to let go of ‘the old way’, to relinquish control and allow kids to take responsibility for their own learning, students too need to develop a PLN. 10 ways to support students in developing a PLN… Start simply… 1. Provide opportunities for students to engage with their in-class PLN. 2. Don’t do all the talking. 3. Model what good learning looks like and sounds like. 4. Let them work with students from other classes. 5. Create global connections. 6. Invite speakers from your local community. 7. Invite parents to share in the learning, in person, or by commenting on class blogs and wikis. 8. Start a class blog. 8. Whoever’s in your PLN, you need to know how to communicate. 9. 10.

20 Tips for Creating a Professional Learning Network elearnspace. Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age December 12, 2004 George Siemens Update (April 5, 2005): I've added a website to explore this concept at www.connectivism.ca Introduction Behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism are the three broad learning theories most often utilized in the creation of instructional environments. Learners as little as forty years ago would complete the required schooling and enter a career that would often last a lifetime. “One of the most persuasive factors is the shrinking half-life of knowledge. Some significant trends in learning: Many learners will move into a variety of different, possibly unrelated fields over the course of their lifetime. Background Driscoll (2000) defines learning as “a persisting change in human performance or performance potential…[which] must come about as a result of the learner’s experience and interaction with the world” (p.11). Driscoll (2000, p14-17) explores some of the complexities of defining learning. Conclusion:

Personal Learning Networks for Educators: 10 Tips - Getting Smart by Guest Author - EdTech By Dr. Mark Wagner I often begin my workshop on personal learning networks (PLN) for educators by asking these questions: Who is in your learning network? Who do you learn from on a regular basis? Who do you turn to for your own professional development? Some educators are lucky enough to learn from their coworkers or colleagues at their site. I usually ask these questions at conferences, which are frequently only annual events – and rare treats for many educators. Learning to Network and Networking to Learn 1. 2. 3. 4. Networking Tools and Anecdotes The four tips above are the core activities of building a personal learning network, and they can be applied using various tools to connect with others online. 5. 6. 7. 8. Final Thoughts These final two tips will help keep your initial frustrations in perspective, and help you avoid the temptation to focus on unimportant metrics as you grow your network. 9. 10. Note: I’ve also been writing about this topic for some time.

3 Steps for Building a Professional Learning Network Published Online: December 31, 2014 —Photo by Sean Chaffey, via Flickr Creative Commons By Brianna Crowley Recently, a colleague asked me, “What is a PLN?” She was taking a graduate course on technology implementation and was required to form a “PLN” using digital communities and tools. Her question prompted me to articulate how I define a professional learning network (PLN) and how I have shaped my own. A professional learning network is a vibrant, ever-changing group of connections to which teachers go to both share and learn. Teachers build PLNs the same way they build any network: by investing time to find and connect with people they trust, who have shared interests and passions. Although technology is often the vehicle to build connections, a PLN is about relationships. Let’s explore how to develop each of these layers of relationships and understand their role in professional learning. Step One: Find the Professionals Imagine you were moving to a new city. Feeling Overwhelmed? Web Only

20 Tips for Creating a Professional Learning Network - Getting Smart by Miriam Clifford “20 Tips for Creating a Professional Learning Network” by Miriam Clifford first appeared on the InfomED blog. Networking is a prime form of 21st century learning. The world is much smaller thanks to technology. Learning is transforming into a globally collaborative enterprise. Just this month, a tech news article showcased how Harvard scientists are considering that “sharing discoveries is more efficient and honorable than patenting them.” As educators, we aim to be connected to advance our craft. Learning networks are based on the theory of connectivism, or learning from diverse social webs. What are some ways to grow your PLN and improve the quality of your interactions? 10 Tips For Using PLN’s Keep the spirit of collaboration as your driving force. 10 Tools & Strategies for Establishing a Productive PLN Use Diigo, Evernote, Pocket, or Delicious to bookmark links. PLNs are a powerful change agent.

Teacher as Curator: Capture and Organize Learning Materials with Web 2.0 Tools - Ted Curran.net In the 21st Century world of abundant free educational content, teachers are challenged to shed the role of “content area expert” and adopt the role of “content curator”. Part of the shifting role of teachers from “sage on the stage” to “guide on the side” means spending less time lecturing at students and more time supporting them to successfully access and think critically about content. Content curation is nothing new to teachers– whether it’s maintaining a great classroom library, hurriedly photocopying a great article you found, or organizing PDFs and YouTube videos in your online course, a big part of the job is creating an organized path through the best materials you know of. Content curation has become a valuable skill across the web— with the explosion of information available online, curation is the act of sifting through everything with a discerning eye, highlighting the very best available, and making it easy to find. It’s not the tool, it’s how you use it Clipping is Easy

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