I call myself a “connected educator” but what does that really mean.
What am I connected to?
How do I connect with them?
Why do I connect?
What do I get from my connections?
Last night I came across this YouTube video that was produced by the Office of Educational Technology at the United States Department of Education. It is only about 5 minutes, but I think that it explains the power that being a connected educator can bring to your professional practice.
Through various social media tools (e.g., Twitter, Facebook, blogs, RSS Feeds) I have created my PLN – Personal Learning
Network. My PLN is a diverse group of educators from around the world that keep me connected with what is happening in a global context in the world of education. They are people who I have met at conferences such as ISTE 2011 in Philadelphia, classmates from my Master’s program, respected authors, organizations, and teachers who I think are doing awesome things! Having a variety of perspectives and hearing about the challenges that other people are facing has definitely helped broaden my point of view and engage more critically in examining my teaching practice and philosophy.
Working in an small independent school, can sometimes be an isolating experience – as you can be the only teacher in a specific context, but it can also be an amazingly innovative experience because teachers are often encouraged and supported to explore new strategies and methods in their classrooms. Twitter has quickly become like having another Grade 4 teacher in my school, where I can go to look for advice, ideas, and support.