During the past 8 weeks, my graduate coursework has been centered around the networked global community. While I would not currently consider myself a networked educator, I have made strides toward connecting more to the world of educators around me. (If not actually connecting, at least accessing greater amounts of information and encouragement from them.
I have discovered and learned how to interact with twitter chats. I understand the power of the # (hashtag) to summarize your thinking and the impact of 140 characters. What a challenge to take my grand ideas from a large scale from an entire blog post and condense it down to 140 characters! I know there are some ideas that I have that I couldn’t do justice to in 140 characters.
While I am still a lurker of sorts on Twitter, in complete fairness, I am a lurker on Facebook in my personal life. That sounds weird, but I like to observe for a while prior to jumping into a conversation. In fact, I remember my freshman year of college, in my symposium class (aka english) I would observe the conversation and gain other peoples viewpoints and only contribute to the conversation when it was required or when I had something important to say. During a conference with my professor, she spoke about the power I had in those situations. While I may not contribute a lot, she saw the quality of what I did contribute. She saw how my classmates would listen and process what I contributed to the conversation. They knew that I wasn’t going to just add random suggestions that were not assets to the conversation, but that I would contribute in a way to move the conversation forward.
Maybe that’s not the best approach, but it’s what I am comfortable with for now. As I gain a greater sense of self, I will begin contributing more to the online and virtual PLC. I will continue to make an effort to have my efforts for an online sense of self that matches my in-person PLC contributions.
I have other networks that I enjoy participating in. I presented on them in April during my class time. See the presentation below for more information about my experiences.