Mind/Shift shared a photo via Twitter on my Facebook feed. The image was a modified London Underground Map. The purpose of the map was to provide students with options for transitions when writing:
I love it when people use slick design combined with relevant ideas to communicate with their students. When Mind/Shift posted the photo, they acknowledged the source via his Twitter handle. A quick search on Twitter, led me to his profile where I quickly made him someone that I will follow. It also pointed me to his WordPress blog which I also followed so that when he posts more gems, I will be one of the first to know. Having done this, I perused his blog, downloaded some of his files for use in my classroom and then created this post. During all this, I found another link to UKEDChat, who had written about the use of maps in classrooms to help students make connections with ideas, given links to an online tool to create your own map, and provided photos from teachers around the UK who have already put this idea into practice.
And then I watched this:
“This media we call ‘social’ is anything but…”
Now, granted, I have not engaged in a conversation with Jamie, we are not friends – yet we are “friends”. I have watched this video three times today and I have been amazed by the number of people who have shared it. When I first started using social media I was a Facebook only person. That has expanded over time to include my blog, Twitter, Pinterest…and more. But how I use social media is also changing. My feed is spattered with pictures of sunsets, plates of food, people’s kids, and snapshots of idyllic lives being lived. But it is also full of politics, world news, educational links, discoveries, ideas, passions, and things that make me think, wonder, and want to connect with others either by sharing what I find or by using what I find in my classroom.
I agree that we need to look up more. I wish I could embed a video of the giggles let loose from my daughter’s two-tooth filled mouth as we pushed her on the swings in the park today. But that would have meant I couldn’t be grabbing her little legs with my hands and staring into her adorable little face. I didn’t want her to see a rectangular box as she swooped down, but our crazy, happy faces almost touching hers. And yet without social media, I don’t think I would be the same teacher I am today. I don’t think I would have the ability to connect with people who are liked-minded, to make new connections, and to renew connections from years ago.
I am grateful that I get to add @jamieclark85 to my tribe. I am grateful for the reminder to look up.
Internet – friend or foe? I am going to go with friend.