Thursday, April 14, 2011

Journal 7: My Personal Learning Network

A Personal Learning Network (PLN) is essential for every individual who wants to continue learning. A PLN is a network of people we learn from and share with, we can connect with people face-to-face or online to gather information and share our knowledge. Through the internet I use tools like Twitter and Diigo to grow my PLN. These tools are helping me gain a ton of knowledge as they provide a huge amount of information and ideas.
1- Twitter:
Creating a twitter account was a great first step in my learning process. I follow great experienced educators who are dedicated and motivated to improve our education system.
  • Shervette Miller is a literature/ composition teacher who only tweets about education.
  • Elana Leoni is a person who is very passionate about educational reform.
  • Nancye Blair is an education technology specialist.
  • David Weston is an education consultant, a Math and Physics teacher, and a data analyst and programmer.
  • Lisa Dabbs is an education coach/ consultant, new teacher facilitator, and a former principal.
What made me follow them is their interest in education and educational reform.
I also participated in a discussion (#ntchat) on Wednesday 4/13/2011 at 5:00 pm. The topic was earth day. Teachers and other participants provided great ideas for earth day.
I stored these URLs for future refrence, as they are a great source of information about this topic. This is a great video as it provides an awesome idea about recycling, students made clothes out of newspapers.
I was so excited to participate in such an outstanding discussion. I learned so much about environment friendly teaching practices such as using blogs to save paper, and teaching students “ green consciousness” by helping them participate in activities like beach cleaning or taking a walk around school neighborhood to enjoy nature.
I have to say that participating in this discussion was an inspiring experience for me!

2- Diigo:
This is a great PLN tool in itself because it connects me with great educators and other people who share the same interest like me. I grew my network by searching for groups that have similar interests, I followed people that I found talking about subjects in education by clicking "follow" on their homepages.I was so excited to be able to collaborate with remarkable educational leaders such as David Warlick and Lucy Gray through Diigo. I can also learn as I explore what they thought is valuable enough to bookmark. I bookmarked Classroom 2.0 and Educator's PLN becuase they are outstanding discussion websites as they connect me to educators and educational leaders who are interested in Web 2.0 tools and social media. I can participate in discussions and share my ideas with others. I also recieve reminders through my e-mail about important events and seminars in education.
I also bookmarked Educational wikis It is a website that is created through collaboration between educators, it provides teachers with tutorials and articles which make great sources of information, they also connect me with more educators to grow my PLN through their discussion forums and lists.

3- Digital Discussion Forums (Ning):
Educator’s PLN is a remarkable discussion forum. I watched “Best Practices in Social Networking for Educators” posted by Thomas Whitby on 4/5/2011.
I really liked this video because it sends a clear message to all teachers and administrators to get involved and to use web 2.0 tools to learn about different teaching strategies and so to better connect with their students through technology.

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