One of my summer goals is to spend much of my free time online looking for Web 2.0 tools for my classes. I am happy to report that the last few days have not disappointed! I happened to be on Twitter Monday afternoon and read about the Ontario Educators Meetup group giving an information session on Edmodo and since I have used Edmodo a couple of times in three different classes, I decided to sit in on the session. I found the presentation to be quite useful as the co-creator of Edmodo, Jeff O’Hare, explained all the various aspects and philosophies behind the program. As a group of teachers, we all then discussed the usefulness of it in the classroom and it was really great to have the opportunity to converse with teachers from all over Ontario as well as various parts of the world! Jeff also discussed Edmodo 3.0 which will have such upgrades as updates in real time and a more streamlined method for replying to posts which I think will be helpful to students as from the demo, it looks a lot like Facebook. Overall, I was very pleased with that hour and would never have come upon such a useful session had it not been for my PLN!
To continue my praise for PLN’s, I have to say that I am constantly amazed at how supportive the educators in my Twitter community are for teaching and all aspects of life. It’s amazing to see when someone has a question or a bad day, the support that flows towards that person to help with the situation. What has really gotten me praising our PLN is that a couple times now I have posted that some of my colleagues are on Twitter and other educators in my network have welcomed them immediately. It definitely surprised them, but I think it’s amazing that people reach out to others and are so willing to share their knowledge and support especially when you do not know a person face to face. It can only enrich us as teachers and as people as well.
Finally, I am going to sing my praises for The One Comment Project by Andy Marcinek. He has come up with the great idea of bringing a community of educators together who will hopefully read a blog and post it in his One Comment Ning so that other educators can read and offer feedback to that blogger. For more detailed information and an interview with Andy, please check out Steven W. Anderson’s blog, Blogging About the Web 2.0 Connected Classroom . I think it’s a great idea and hopefully it will create a plethora of reading materials and excellent ideas for the classroom. Awesome work, Andy!