As a public education teacher I see the affects of social media among students and colleagues, both positive and negative, everyday. The teachers at my school use many online tools like YouTube and Ziggy Learning to grab the attention of our students. Teachers who don't use these tools are considered boring and old. These sorts of tools can definitely enhance learning. However, most of the teachers consider using social media sites a big no-no. Our district is located in a small community with some parents who talk...a lot...to anyone who will listen. On our school Facebook fan page site we have observed parent rants regarding classes, teachers, other parents who are crazy drivers, the possibilities are endless, but in general they have very little to do with the quality of education we deliver. Unfortunately, even though we have a wonderful school with outstanding students and an API of 861 (the highest middle school score in three counties), these negative comments often overshadow the positive ones. These results were so discouraging that the administrator and teachers discontinued updating the page.
Despite all of this, I have decided to set up a Facebook fan page for my "Leadership" class. I will try to generate school spirit and spark positive discussion between students in my class of 28. The outcome remains a mystery...stay tuned!
Buzzetto-More, N. A. (2012). Social Networking in Undergraduate Education.
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