Thursday, 14 March 2013

How am I developing my PLN

I read this as part of a post yesterday - The Ten Skills Modern Teachers Must Have.

Lots of good reading there, but I want to focus on the first point:

1) Build Your PLN

NetworkingWhether you call it a ‘personal learning network’ or a ‘professional learning network’ is not important. What is important is that you know exactly how to connect with teachers, admins, and students from around the world. This network can answer questions you have about absolutely anything. Before setting off on any digital adventure, make sure your fellow teachers in your district know what you’re up to and then be sure to connect with similar teachers around the world. So update your Twitter stream, start using Google+, and get to know Learnist.
For me, this is vital. I am now learning every day.  I rely on and post at least one article to my staff blog every day.  I read the articles and am amazed at the amount of new information available every day.  Are the teachers picking up on all this?  I am not sure, but I feel compelled to share these great ideas with whoever is reading the blog.
I know I need to start following more bloggers.  Today, I saw a great post list the 100 most important bloggers to follow..  I follow Doug Peterson @dougpete- he is a great Canadian source, which is important to me.  Also he posts so much information!  I get at least three notices from him each day - all of them really useful.
I recognize many of the other top bloggers, but I can't say i follow them on a regular basis.
What has helped a great deal are lists created on Twitter.  I now have a daily follow list, and ocsb list (my board) an admin list and an ed tech list.  Maybe too many lists, I usually get to the top two each day.
Now i read I have to start to use Learnist!  That's a new one that I will have to figure out.
The main thing about your PLN is to just get started.  It is not overwhelming, it is simply a rich source  of information that will help you do a better job.  We are no longer limited to single sources of information which is a relief.  
All we need to do is start!
My suggestion for our next principal's meeting would be to spend a few hours talking about where we are at in developing our PLN.  it's no longer a valid excuse to say that it is just too overwhelming.  You just have to start!!

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