Over the past 2+years, my jaw has dropped as I have witnessed numerous teachers proactively taking advantage of Social Media outlets to better themselves through Professional Development and collaborative best practices sharing with their colleagues...locally and aboard internationally. I confess jealously as to not having the same resources available when I was teaching...and also excitement for those educators who are keeping up with the times.
While our students have access to content instantly versus pouring of hours over print in a library, fellow educators are growing to realize and implement those same internet-based avenues - a plethora of resources found through:
- Twitter – forming PLN (Personal Learning Networks) and weekly chats on relevant topics (i.e. #edchat, #cpchat)
- LinkedIn – professional networking and one of the new job hiring “platforms”
- YouTube – engaging you and your students
- Blogs – (http://www.connectedprincipals.com/, http://edupln.ning.com/)
- Reform Symposium -
- Skype – web/video conferencing
- Edmodo – secure social learning network for teachers & students
- School Tube
Often during early professional development sessions, several newbies would converse about whether or not we felt prepared to be an educator. Without a doubt, I affirmatively believed LeTourneau University's Secondary Ed Program ('98-'01) prepared me. Today, I ponder with wonder if education majors are learning the relevant technology to integrate into the classroom beyond PowerPoint, Web quests, and the like.
To that in, educators are a breed of lifelong learners ever being challenged to keep up, or hopefully a step ahead of their students, to engage and educate their students to be successful in the world and positive contributors to the society they participate with.
Educators stand proudly and be equipped. A plethora of resources is a click away...for free on the web in your pajamas.