10 Tips 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? 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: For more on this topic, you might also want to explore Jeff Utecht’s book Reach: Building Communities and Networks for Professional Development. Note: I’ve also been writing about this topic for some time.
Ed-Tech Coaches Are the Orchestra Conductors of K–12 Education After spending a few years teaching eighth-grade English language arts (ELA) and history classes at Colegio Inglés in Mexico, educator Isaac Pineda recently decided to make a switch and become a full-time education-technology coach. There are a few things he will miss about being a day-to-day classroom instructor, according to a post on his blog, which was selected as an EdTech Must-Read K–12 IT Blog this year. Mainly, he’ll miss the one-on-one time he had with his group of 40 or so students. “Never before had I realized the magnitude of the blessing it is to have a number of kids every day before you,” Pineda writes. While he spends far less time with students individually, Pineda does get to reach a larger number of students, overall, as an ed-tech coach. When I was teaching ELA and history, I had a direct impact and influence over 46 students divided in two groups of 23 each. Pineda’s appreciation for the power of the classroom teacher is no doubt linked to his time spent as one.
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
16 Ways Educators Can Use Pinterest [INFOGRAPHIC] Teachers are known for their organizational skills, so chances are they'll love Pinterest's intuitive and logical design. The social network's user experience has helped it earn a top spot among today's most popular social networks. Therefore, we predict that teachers will give it a gold star, too. Our friends at OnlineUniversities.com have put together the following infographic, which details how teachers can use Pinterest to organize lesson plans, distribute curricula, collaborate with other faculty, and even encourage student participation. SEE ALSO: 9 Ways to Engage Your Employees on Pinterest Remember, however, that Pinterest's terms of service dictate that users under the age of 13 are prohibited. Image courtesy of Flickr, cybrarian77
Educational Leadership:Faces of Poverty:Put the "Personal" in Your PLN The term personal learning network (PLN) has been a part of technology junkies' vocabulary for more than 10 years,1 but the tools and skills needed to take full advantage of networked learning continue to evolve. I define a PLN as a self-created set of experts, colleagues, and resources—usually dependent on networked technology—that meet one's daily learning needs. I got my first taste of a PLN in the early 1990s when LM_Net—an e-mail list of school librarians around the United States, and later around the world—got started. Opportunities for continuing education for educators, such as reading professional journals, attending conferences, taking college classes, and participating in local inservice sessions, are still available and important. Many of us have built PLNs using networked technologies. As we move past the "wow" factor of PLNs, it's imperative that our PLN practices evolve to ensure more thoughtful use of our time. Social networks. Content aggregators. Twitter.
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.
Utilizing Twitter chats for professional development SmartBlogs Each week, educators from around the world take part in various conversations on Twitter known as “chats.” These conversations have become an excellent way for educators to connect on relevant topics, share resources and best practices, all while challenging each other’s thinking. The premise of a Twitter chat is simple. Each lasts for 60 minutes, moderators pose questions on a predetermined topic, and participants use a consistent hashtag (#) to communicate. Questions are posed in a sequential “Q1, Q2” (Question 1, 2, etc.) format over the 60-minute time period. A variety of tools such as Tweetdeck, HootSuite, Tweetchat, etc., can be utilized to aggregate the chat into a single stream to ease the conversation process. Recently, I pulled together six educators from around the country who are leaders in this area. Blumengarten (@cybraryman1) has cataloged a list of Twitter chats, which can be found here. Some recommended chats include:
Using TPACK as a Framework for Tech PD, Integration and Assessment. Henrico County Schools System has adopted the TPACK as the Framework for professional development and 21st Century Learning in the Henrico County Schools System. Henrico County is one of the largest and earliest districts to pioneer and implement a one-to-one initiative. They have adopted this model as its conceptual framework to guide their progress towards the 21st Century Learning. See How Henrico County School District Incorporates Technology into Learning.Henrico 21 Overview from HCPS Instructional Technology on Vimeo. To see more videos visit this link. Below are some essential pieces toward meeting their vision. The TPACK ModelThe TPACK Model was created in response to the need to provide a framework around the important pieces of innovating learning with a focus on Technology, Pedagogy, and Content Knowledge. This is a diagram of the model. Assessment Tools Technology Infused LessonsThe teachers write lessons incorporating the elements of the TPACK model.
6 Possible Roles For Teachers In A Personalized Learning Environment by Justin Marquis, Ph. D There is a mountain of speculation and debate about what school and learning will look like in the near future. Will education be online? The Future of Learning An October, 2012 video released by telecom company Ericsson presents a survey of educational experts and entrepreneurs speculating about the future of education. The focus of the video is the ability of these technologies to track minute user data and facilitate intimately individualized instruction based on that data, including student learning preference, peak performance times, prior knowledge, and a host of other information. “Coursera’s Koller says one of the revolutions in education is that teaching will be less about conveying information and more of a return to its original roots where instructors engage in dialogue, develop critical thinking skills and spark passion about a discipline.” (23 Oct., 2012) The Role of the Educator on an Individualized World? 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
Introduction - Issues ...about Change, Professional Learning Communities: What Are They And Why Are They Important?, Volume 6, Number 1 Home | Issues ...about Change Archive | Professional Learning Communities: What Are They And Why Are They Important? In education circles, the term learning community has become commonplace. It is being used to mean any number of things, such as extending classroom practice into the community; bringing community personnel into the school to enhance the curriculum and learning tasks for students; or engaging students, teachers, and administrators simultaneously in learning - to suggest just a few. This paper focuses on what Astuto and colleagues (1993) label the professional community of learners, in which the teachers in a school and its administrators continuously seek and share learning and then act on what they learn. As an organizational arrangement, the professional learning community is seen as a powerful staff development approach and a potent strategy for school change and improvement. Each of these is discussed briefly in this paper. Next Page: Supportive and Shared Leadership
Using SAMR to Teach Above the Line - Getting Smart by Susan Oxnevad - 1:1 program, Apple, edchat, EdTech, SAMR, technology For as long as I can remember I have been an advocate for helping teachers understand the stages of technology integration to help them effectively use tech as a tool for learning. I’ve adopted a few different tech integration models over the years, discussed the ideas with administrators for use as a starting point for tech integration, and kept the ideas front of mind as I invent and discover new ways for using technology as a tool for learning. Discussing the stages of tech integration has led to some thought provoking and inspiring conversations, but the ideas have not gained a lot of momentum in my face-to-face teaching environment until now. As many districts jump on board with 1:1 implementation, Apple’s use of the SAMR model as a framework for tech integration presents a consistent, clear and powerful message that is spreading! About SAMR Researchers have determined that technology integration typically moves through specific levels. Image created by Dr. An Emphasis on Task Design
How to Create a Robust and Meaningful Personal Learning Network [PLN] This post describes how educators can develop a personal learning network that supports meaningful and relevant learning. The MOOC, Education Technology & Media, etmooc, is used here as a working example of how to develop a PLN. “My Personal Learning Network is the key to keeping me up-to-date with all the changes that are happening in education and how technology can best support and engage today’s students.” Brian Metcalfe: teacher, blogger at lifelonglearners.com A visual image of participants in an open, online course- etmooc, which shows the potential to find and create personal connections as part of one’s PLN. I wrote a post recently about how to develop a personal learning environment [PLE], the need and benefits of doing so, for educators in particular. What is a PLN? Twitter 6×6 (Photo credit: Steve Woolf) Logo for etmooc from etmooc.org In the etmooc we are primarily using Google+ Community , Blackboard Collaborate and Twitter to interact. Resources Like this: Like Loading...
About PLCs | All Things PLC | Powered by Solution Tree Professional learning community (PLC) An ongoing process in which educators work collaboratively in recurring cycles of collective inquiry and action research to achieve better results for the students they serve. Professional learning communities operate under the assumption that the key to improved learning for students is continuous job-embedded learning for educators. Read what advocates say about the impact of PLCs. What Are Professional Learning Communities? It has been interesting to observe the growing popularity of the term professional learning community. We have seen many instances in which educators assume that a PLC is a program. We have seen other instances in which educators assume that a PLC is a meeting—an occasional event when they meet with colleagues to complete a task. So, what is a PLC? A Focus on Learning The very essence of a learning community is a focus on and a commitment to the learning of each student. A Collaborative Culture With a Focus on Learning for All
SAMR Model Explained Through Examples SAMR is one of the relevant learning models teachers can use to effectively integrate technology in education. I have been doing some readings into it and have also posted a wide variety of articles and graphics on what teachers need to know to apply this model in their technology practices in the classroom. I invite you to check this section to access the resources I have compiled over the last couple of months. Today I am sharing with you a great Prezi presentation created by Jim Cash and entitled " SAMR Examples ". Before you start reading the presentation, here is a refresher about SAMR model levels: 1- Redefinition tech allows for the creation of new tasks, previously inconceivable. 2-Modification Technology allows for significant task design 3- Augmentation Technology acts as a direct tool substitute, with functional improvements 4- Substitution technology acts as a direct tool substitute with no functional change.