I am a dabbler in Web 2. I have joined Twitter, Delicious, Nings etc and have used Wikispaces. I really want to learn more about them to unlock the potential for use with students as well as continuing my Personal Learning Network . This is my first blog as I had tried before but did not have a purpose and it all looked too hard !!
I am thrilled that other staff (6!)from my school are joining in this journey as it will enriched by their involvement so that whilst creating a PLN we are also strengthening the PD within our school at a local level.
I have joined many Nings and online groups and struggle to find the time to fully participate. I am in awe of some of the people I have come to know ‘virtually’ – it was in fact through one of these groups that I heard about this project. Many of these people are very generous in sharing their skills and experiences. Some also ‘podcast’ as well as write blogs – Chris Betcher is one I follow avidly as I like the way he thinks.
Chris’s Blog http://chrisbetcher.com/ and his Podcast – the Virtual classroom http://www.virtualstaffroom.net/
Another good blog with interesting facts/ideas/theories http://whatedsaid.wordpress.com/ . I subscribe to quite e few blogs etc using my iGoogle account.
Here is a great story about another educator Anne Mirtschin , I have never met Anne, but her name comes up again and again in the Blogs of other educators- the story tells how Anne gradually let Web 2.0 transform her teaching.
I searched iTunes and found some good podcasts- edTech Crew , RU Connected and Learning in Hand (all about using iPod touch) are some to which I subscribe.
Another great source of ‘connectedness’ is from mailing lists – I belong to OZ Teachers and OZ-TL’s – both an amazing example of professionals sharing their knowledge. I rarely find the confidence to contribute to many of these forums/nings/mailing lists. I am more a lurker, but would like to feel confident to contribute.
Personally, I love the way Facebook keeps me intouch with friends overseas on a regular basis. I have watched my teenage daughters move in to the phase where social networking via FB and to a lesser extent MySpace is a vital teenage tool. Recently, they have also started to use to communicate about school work and I can see that it is likely to be the way of the future.
One stumbling block is sorting out from all the tools, the one most appropriate for the current task – when to blog, when to make a Ning and not a Wiki? Diigo or Delicious ? etc. I hope this process might highlight the points of difference of these tools to make that selection simpler.
A quote from one of the readings “Your current safe boundaries were once unknown frontiers – Don’t be afraid to be an explorer” – Field Guide For Change Agents – reinforces how the process of change is evolutionary – it has been happening forever and will continue to. Are we experiencing anything more radical than each other generation? Certainly feels like it sometimes. As teachers I think we are some of the more resilient professionals – we have become accustomed to constantly changing requirements. These developments should be no different. Why does it feel harder though?