There are many educators out there that still need to find a Personal (or Professional) Learning Network (PLN). Wikipedia defines a PLN as a group of people that helps you learn, even if you don’t know them. You can find my PLN on Facebook, Twitter, and Plurk. I know many that have started using Google+, but I have not.
So why should we have a PLN? Well, for starters, it’s summer time and I’m still learning. I am still collaborating with educators around the world and finding out new information in education, Science, Math, and all subjects. In fact, there are chats on Twitter that happen weekly for many different education fields. You can find them here showing when subjects, administrators, and others meet to chat. Each chat lasts about an hour long.
Also, if you are unable to chat at the time of the chat, you can always ask, using the correct hashtag, where the archives are kept so that you can go back and see what they were chatting about. Also, by following hashtags on Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, or other social media dashboard, you can see when people post about certain topics and tagging their post.
Why is this important? Well, if you are feeling bogged down and alone in your building, you can reach out and get advice from people. There are educators around the world trying new and exciting things and share with everyone what they are doing. Also, they are there to help out whenever you may have questions or need a new source for the topic you are teaching. Teachers care about each other and want to work together to reach students!
Once you get onto Twitter you can also follow a paper.li, which is a newspaper tweeters build using stories shared on Twitter. This shares several stories in one place. Many tweeters have started papers out there. Two that I follow are The #scichat Daily and Ginger’s LifePractice Fuel. The first one is the subject that I’m teaching, the other being a paper sharing educational ideas.
So how do you get all of this started? The Innovative Educator gives some ideas here. Also, you can always feel free to contact me and I can help you out. We are all here to work together for students. It’s time to reach out and work together to make teaching more exciting and great for students!