"While the old web was about websites, clicks, and "eyeballs", the new web is about communities, participation and peering." Tapscott and Williams, 2006 (page 83, Web 2.0 for Educators, Solomon and Schrum, 2010)
That quote really sums up how I now view my Internet interactions-especially when I have my "teacher hat" on. Our assignment for week 5 was to explore new social networking sites.
I already use Facebook quite often, but mostly for my personal life. I "liked" pages noted in our assignments folder, as well as some of the pages of other education blogs I read. I like getting the updates to blog posts via Facebook. It is quicker than me checking in to the blog itself or even my Google Reader, and I can get a little snippet of the post to know if I need to check it out further. I like this new tool :).
I also use Pinterest...a LOT. **I just added a "Follow Me on Pinterest" button on my sidebar if you would like to see some of my boards. I loo-O-oove Pinterest! Several teachers at my school are also"Pin-a-holics" like me. When we see each others bulletin board displays or other classroom ideas we joke about how we "found it on Pinterest". Because we all follow each other, we also share lots of ideas without even having to think about it. One great example is this behavior management system that almost every grade level and teacher began using this year simply because we pinned it off of each other over the summer then talked about it when we came back together in August. Now that most of us are using the same system, we have a common language about behavior choices. This will really help next year when our school moves to PBIS and we already have the groundwork ready. Because Pinterest brought us together.
I signed up for the following Nings-TeacherLibrarian, Teacher Vodcasting and Flipped Classroom Network, and iPads in Education, as well as The Educator's PLN. I especially like reading through the posts in the forums of these networks. The discussions in the threads are really interesting to read. I have even replied in a few of them. It really makes you feel like you are part of an extended teaching-and learning-community.
I know I have said this before, but to say that all of this new information flooding toward me from JUST this course is overwhelming is an understatement. It's all for good, but I am very glad that summer break is just around the corner and I will have more time to really digest it all and wrap my brain around how I would like implement some of these ideas in my classroom for next year. And beyond.