In the last couple years, I started investigating the use of social media tools for educational purposes. This has been quite an interesting learning adventure for me. Incorporating these tools into my teaching, I had an opportunity to learn about, practice and experience the use of these platforms with my students. Personally, social media has been a great channel for my own professional development as a researcher and a teacher. I had a chance to connect to various experts all around the world by constructing and cultivating my own personal learning environments. I also think that by creating their personal learning networks, teachers can collaborate, learn together, and connect to the experts, colleagues, and students not only in their geographical area but also in other parts of the world.
Recently, we incorporated an activity into our graduate class and asked students to share a social network which they use for their own professional development. They came up with a great list last semester. I would like to share couple of these social networks here. It is amazing to see that teachers from all around to world are now crossing the boundaries of time and space and engaging in the creation of their own professional development opportunities.
- Teacher Librarian Ning: A community of teacher librarians and other educators
- We the Teachers: Connect with other teachers, finding teaching resources and materials
- Curriki: K12 open curricula community
- Project Lead the Way Teacher: Participate to the network of teachers who teach STEM courses
- Professors de Espanol Ning: Social networking sites for Spanish teachers
- Diigo: A Social bookmarking tool. Connect to the networks of teachers who share resources and bookmarks in various topics.
- Nuvvo: Explore learning communities to connect to other educators and learners
- Elementary Tech Teachers Ning: Share plans, ideas, tools related to teaching and using technology.
- 1:1 Laptop Schools Ning: Collaborate and and share best practice in the classrooms of 1:1 laptop schools.
- Proteacher: Professional community for school teachers in grades PreK-8
- Brainify: Create, share library of academic websites, ask questions and connect to the students,
- Classroom 2.0: The community for educators using Web 2.0 and collaborative technologies
- Teachers Recess: Social networking and file sharing site for educators
- Teacher Tube: Online community for sharing instructional teacher videos.