I am back! After a rough morning trying to get on here (multiple power outages did not deter me!) I am back to blog!
Reading some of the articles related to this tool was very interesting to me. Some of the ideas shared in "What is the changing role of the teacher, and how do we support that new role?" really made me think.
I digress..let me share some of my thoughts on PLN's, and please feel free to comment!
What are your thoughts about building an online education community and participating in a PLN?
I feel that building an online education community and participating in a PLN can be a very powerful tool for us as teachers to use. In the article I mentioned above, it stated "it takes a village to raise a child, but it also takes someone to show the village ways of doing things it had never thought of". I strongly believe in this philosophy. Being new to the profession I am always looking for different ways of teaching concepts and better ways of teaching concepts. I tell my students all the time that I am providing them with the tools that they need to be successful, but I also have to acquire tools to be an effective teacher in order for me to better prepare them. As teachers, we are lifelong learners and in this way we can ensure the success of our students. I can learn, have learned and continue to learn many things from my colleagues, and I also have many things that I feel I can offer to my fellow teachers. Having access to online education communities and PLN's gives teachers an opportunity to move beyond the four walls of their school in a nonthreatening environment. I can go to the online education community with a question on how to teach something, or a problem that arose while I was teaching (without feeling "dumb" or a novice) and I can almost instantly have responses from teachers throughout the United States and further! I also can add my thoughts share my ideas with someone in New York, for example on a GREAT lesson that I had, that would work nicely with a unit that they are teaching. On the other hand, I could also share my experiences of teaching a lesson that I THOUGHT would turn out amazing but flopped, and help another teacher tweak the lesson to make it better-workable! As the article said "Everyone plays an active role in a networked learning community, contributing to the community’s construction of knowledge as its members collaborate to address problems (whether the goal is learning to read or learning to fly a rocket to the moon)"
The point that stood out to me with regards to commenting was that students have changed. We too must change our teaching to meet the needs of our students, the 21st century learner.
Ok folks, in my true style, I wrote a lot! There is still so much more I could have said! Too many thoughts on my mind...not enough space to say it all!
Tool #2 down...9 more to go! Stay tuned for more!