Connecting: Moving Forward

I have been so busy this week with things in my classroom and my teacher leadership class as part of my masters program that I haven’t had time to stop and smell the #etmooc until today.  So, while listening to George Couros talk about connecting to your administrators and using social media in a way that can change education and the way we all learn, I stopped and thought:  Who am I connected to and why?

I’ve had a professional twitter account for a couple of years now and because I have been, up until very recently, a complete idiot regarding how to use it effectively, I have been adding an eclectic assortment of individuals, groups, companies, etc. to my following list. Conversely, others have been doing the same by following me.  I think I need to do, as they say on facebook, a “cleansing of my ‘friends’ list'”.

I added Hoot Suite this week and I now clearly see what I have in the way of the beginnings of a PLN.  This pleases me. People have been talking to me and I didn’t even know it!   I want to connect, to be more open in sharing what I know and asking for what I want to learn.  I want to expand my horizons in educational technology to a place where, perhaps, I will truly see the stars out there.  I’m excited about this.

George, in his webinar this week,  Becoming a Networked Educational Leader, talked about connecting with the professionals close to you, right in your back yard, if you will.  On my Linked In account, I’ve done a little of that, but somehow, there should be more.  I sometimes feel invisible, as if I’m in a vacuum with people seeing bits and pieces of who I am, being impressed with them, and deciding, I’ll add you to my network.  Then they disappear.  Well, I don’t talk to them, where is their incentive to talk to me?

Interacting with each other is the key to a successful and productive PLN and growing professionally.  I am here, see me?  I have begun to comment on blogs, people are commenting on mine.  Its working.  In time, I suppose the network, the web, the tangled mess we will make with each other, will be the foundation of a stronger educational system worldwide.  I look forward to it.  I’ll take the ideals learned this week, tweak them a little, and use them to get my students to connect more, as well as their parents, and most importantly, for MY professional development, my colleagues.  

How has learning new ways to connect with other professionals both in and out of your immediate sphere of influence changed the way you teach, interact with students and their parents and the world in general?

6 Comments

  1. Great post! I like how you’ve stopped to evaluate your PLN and are working yo make intentional and meaningful connections! I’m looking forward to learning with you.

    1. C.S. Stone says:

      the one joy I’ve found in participating in ETMOOC, is learning how to do this properly so it gives me what I need and allowing me to give others what they need, as opposed to just having a list of followers who are spamming me.. and me being a spammer with others. Working efficiently at being a knowledgeable professional is my goal! Thanks Margaret!

  2. Mary says:

    Enjoyed reading your post. What strikes my this year is in my return to school, I used so many ideas that I had learned from my twitter PLN. From websites, to introductory getting to know you activities, to YouTube clips around leadership, all of it came through my PLN. I think that is a wonderful thing. As a person who likes to try new things and find new ways to inspire my students, my PLN is indispensable.
    I find HootSuite helpful too for keeping track of all the conversations too.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Mary

  3. lsniestrath says:

    Isn’t it exciting how when something comes together and clicks that it all falls into place? The beauty of the #etmooc is the time that the organizers provide to allow you to play with the tools, to catch up on sessions that you’ve missed and to have time to reflect on all of it. The traditional MOOC that I am taking is so fast paced that there really isn’t time to process everything! I’m enjoying what I am learning here!
    I look forward to reading more from you in the future!
    Lauire

    1. C.S. Stone says:

      Thank you… I”m enjoying it also… can’t wait to do my digital story…

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