Social Media can be a great resource for students.
- increases student engagement
- improves communications between students, teacher
- prepares students to use social media responsibly
- can give shy students a voice
- allows teachers to give individual feedback for assignments
Teachers need to explicitly teach internet safety before allowing students to use it on their own.
- Students can get distracted on social media and use it for purposes other than the intended assignment
- Cyberbullying has become an issue with young people and the internet. Students' activity online should be closely monitored.
- Putting too much emphasis on online interactions can discourage face to face communication.
1. Talk about it first. What kinds of things are on the internet? Who can see things you post? How can you be safe using the internet?
2. Let parents know what kinds of online activities the students are participating in and allow parents to be involved or connected.
3. Don't allow social media to be the only way to get resources. Not all students have computer or internet access at home, so resources should be available to all students.
4. Always monitor students' online activity.
Twitter is great for using with students because it can easily be password protected. I use twitter to share pictures of what we are doing in the classroom. It's easy to post from my phone, which I also take the pictures on. It's a fun and easy way to safely share our classroom happenings with parents.
Symbaloo is great for young learners because it allows you to compile online resources and organize them in a visual format. I have used it with my students and they are able to easily navigate.