Thursday, January 5, 2012

Tool # 2: Building Community

 I have visited the blogs of 6 educators. I visited two of the suggested sites. The sites were full of information, but none of it seemed relevant to my interests at this time. There are great resources available, but I think I could waste a lot of time in unfocused exploration of blogs. I am also reluctant to reveal my personal information to strangers on the internet (as well as in real life.)

I visited the blogs of 3 teachers at my campus. Since MHS is just beginning 11 tools, there was not much posted yet. It is interesting to see how different each blog looks already. A blog can be a creative expression of a personal style.

I visited the blog of one teacher at another campus who is further along in the 11 tools. We teach the same subject, and she had posted about resources that I will be able to use. I left a comment on her blog. I think that there could be useful communication between teachers of the same subject, and between students at different schools who are studying the same topic.

I am updating this post on January 9, in order to completely answer the questions for Tool #2. I will cut and paste from the 11 tools site, with my responses inserted in italics, in order to address each question and receive credit for the assignment,.

  1. After completing the above, share you thoughts about building and participating in an online community and participating in a PLN. What points stood out to you from the commenting advice? An online community and PLN could be a valuable support. It could also be a distraction. To be a productive participant in an online discussion, comments should be relevant and respectful. Were you able to apply any of the advice in your comments? Yes, I believe the comments that I left on another teacher's blog were useful and respectful. How did you feel about sharing your thoughts publicly? I am willing to share my thoughts publicly on the Internet using a pseudonym. For most blog posts I am not yet willing to reveal my real name or other identifying information, since it is not necessary. I am willing to reveal my identity when it is necessary, for example on my SBISD website.Was it different than when you're sharing your successes/challenges with your teammate? Of course! I know and trust my colleagues. Strangers on the internet might or might not be trustworthy.
  2. Share the url or name of a website or social network that you plan to visit in the future. What does that site have to offer? I plan to visit Mustang Librarian published by the librarian at my school. This website offers information to support and assist teachers in completing 11 tools. I have added this blog to my reading list.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tool # 1: Create a blog

Creating the blog was not very difficult. The directions from the 11 tools site and information from this morning's inservice were helpful. I will consider creating another blog to use for communication with my classes.

I personalized my blog with an avatar. I found the animated avatars from Voki distracting, so I used a picture that I found on the Internet. I also find background music for text distracting. I think I will prefer a minimalist style for my blogs.