A PLN is a personal learning network. They are very valuable resources for communicating among students or fellow teachers. Students can use them to transport documents, view specific documents and reach out to various sites that provide educational opportunities, and transfer documents and works for others to view. The personal learning network that I was interested in is twitter. This PLN absolutely fascinates me with the potential it has in the classroom. Hoping to become a future history teacher, I see twitter as an avenue to enhance students’ knowledge and excitement in the curriculum. PLN are very valuable for teachers. In an age in education where budget cuts are limiting the tools that teachers need to teach their students, PLN’s provide interesting paths for students to enhance their knowledge in a subject area. Also teachers can provide much more insight in using these tools. For instance, Diigo allows students and teachers to share documents and possibly primary sources that would either be too hard to find or cost too much to make a copy for every single student. PLN’s have provided so much to the field of education.
A very valuable PLN is the RSS feed. It allows for a person who has created a Blog to stream information and news that pertains to a particular website that one is interested in. On my educational blog I have RSS feeds to KPBS, History.net, and the New York Times. As a future History teacher these three RSS feeds provide a large amount of sources and information that will cover any standard for California Social Science. I picked the world news RSS feed from the New York Times which will allow me to present current events to my students. The KPBS education RSS feed keeps me up to date on local news. The History.net RSS feed allows for news in the History field which would be easy to relate in any of my classes.
Twitter can also be a very valuable source. You can follow famous people, historians, and historical reviews or magazines. On top of this you receive information and links to pictures, articles, and video feeds. I am following many of my fellow classmates on twitter. But I also follow the KPBS twitter, the National Parks Service twitter, and the History Channel twitter. They all provide wonderful insight on a daily basis.
On Diigo I follow two of my classmates Ryan Otterson and Rob James. They provide a ton of sources that we shared on our Diigo library about “Ipads in the classroom” and the implementation of Ipads as a technology in education. Diigo is a valuable source because teacher can create groups online for their classes and give their students access to various arrangements of sources. I found on the Diigo website a source that talked about languages that are becoming endangered. I found this to be very interesting.
I went on the ITSE site and entered their digital discussion forum known as Ning. I looked at a blog post from Suzie Boss who talks about bringing “technological innovation” into the classroom. She included an interview via Skype which was very interesting to see. She wanted to express “initiatives that encourage creativity, problem solving, and grassroots innovation”. I thought this was a very informative PLN and allows teachers to access forums and blogs on technology in the classroom.
I felt that looking at all of these PLN’s was very enlightening. I have learned a lot in this class that I didn’t know. I thought Twitter was just for following sports teams. I never knew it had an application in modern education. My favorite PLNs would have to be the RSS feed, Blogs, and Twitter. These are easy to use applications and I see myself using them a lot in the classroom. I didn’t really like Diigo because I just see students getting lost in the website. It is a great PLN I just don’t think I will use it in my classroom. I could post the documents on an internet blog and get the same effect form the students.
My internet Blog where you can see my RSS feeds:
My Diigo Library: http://www.diigo.com/user/matthew4444
My Twitter Page: https://twitter.com/#!/Padrefan4life
The Blog I looked at on Ning: http://iste2012.org/profiles/blogs/making-innovation-teachable?xg_source=activity