Get Everyone Involved

In order to be able to connect with others, one must have access to the proper tools in getting their voice heard. The social media is great in this category and there are so many different ways of using it. For teachers, using social media can enable them to talk and remind their students of various works and topics that are mentioned earlier in class. In an article by Lucy Harper, she mentions how popular sites such as twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest can be used for educational purposes.

Hand holding a Social Media 3d Sphere

For example, a teacher can set up a class page on Facebook for all of his or her students to see. The teacher can post reminders or assignments online and can also receive any questions or comments regarding any work. Students can communicate and discuss various topics through this page which can then essentially turn into a class chat via social media. This can help parents to get more involved because it allows them to view the work that their child is supposed to be doing. The article also mentions how Twitter can be a quick and sufficient way for parents to be reminded that their child has an assignment due the very next day or needs to bring something in for a lesson. Since twitter only allows 140 characters, it is a simple and direct message that is too the point and can be very helpful for busy families. Websites like these permits extending communication among teachers, students, and parents. This can very well help the overall flow of the class and can help children to stay on task with homework and other projects or assignments. Instead of only having a class during the day, it can branch out after hours and benefit the lives of students. Staying up to date and talking and communicating with one another is only a click away and can save a lot of time and confusion in the long run.

For more info about the benefits of social media, check out this article http://edudemic.com/2013/04/improve-school-communication-using-social-media/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

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It’s All Fun and Games…

Studying? Where’s the fun in that? If you are an individual who says they enjoy spending countless hours in the library studying their brains out for a big exam, then you are clearly not human. The stress, agony, and pressure can be very overwhelming at times. When I was at the library the other night, I kept finding myself dozing off in space, wishing there was a better way of going about this. Perhaps there can be.  With all the technology and programs that it has to offer, I feel like game based learning should not only be used for younger grade levels but also for high school.

As mentioned by Andrew Miller In an article in Edutopia, he states “Teachers are the designers of all the components of the learning environment for students, from the management to the assessment.” If teachers use technology and learn how to create their own review game for a particular lesson, it can be very helpful for students, not to mention enjoyable. Not everything can be all fun and games, but it can definitely add some color and livelihood to the curriculum. Educators need to branch out from traditional study guides that are pages in length and hard to follow along. If students are to play a game or interact in an activity, they can collaborate and work together as a team to compete and figure out answers to questions and so on… With the use of technology, Game based learning can also be helpful for students who are more visual because of its use of digital media. They can understand material better when they have something to look at. In the article, Game- Based Learning Units for the Everyday Teacher, it stresses how it allows the student to take a risk without being penalized. Since it is only for practice, it enables trial and error and being able to try over again until you get it right. It’s all fun and games until you get a bad test grade back, but if you play your cards right, you might come out on top of the class.

For more  about this, check out the full article:

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/video-game-model-unit-andrew-miller

Personal Learning Networks

In class this week, we are being introduced to Personal Learning Networks and learning what the buzz is all about. From what I got so far, it seems like a great tool. It is an online network that allows teachers and colleagues to come together to discuss new ideas and skills that they use in the classroom. It enables teachers from all over the world to have a say of what may or may not work when trying to be an effective teacher. With just a click of a button, thousands of resources and materials are at the palm of your hand. It is easier to come across while trying to balance busy schedules. This can very well take the place of the traditional professional development and can be of greater use. Rather than having to set up a time and place, you can explore and view the sites at your own leisure.  It is fast and simple and is something that everyone should try out.

Since not all teachers are tech savvy, it is important that we spread the world and recommend others to give it a shot. With just a little time and effort in the beginning, it can make one’s life much easier and helpful for their career. It is a great way to go beyond your horizons and learn valuable information in the process from other individuals in the same field.

In the article Teaching Village, it explains the gist of what a Personal Learning Network is and how it has become the new age of technology and the teaching world. As Barbara Sakamoto mentions in the article, “The teachers in my Personal Learning Network are some of the best friends I’ll never meet.”  I very well see myself joining one of these in the near future and hope to converse with others and continue to learn and be inspired. For more information check out this article http://www.teachingvillage.org/2012/01/03/what-is-a-pln-anyway/