Posts Tagged ‘social’
When folks ask me how to leverage on social media in education, one of the answers I give them is: Transfer what you do in your social use of the tool; do not transfer what you learn from using an LMS.
The other message is: Learn by observing what companies do with Facebook.
Thanks to CeL staff @raifanah who shared in our Diigo space, 5 Big Tech Companies That Are Killing It On Facebook, I have picked up some tips from the these big five:
- From Amazon: Converse with your audience
- From Dell: Provide useful how-tos
- From Samsung: Show specific uses of edtech
- From MS XBox: Provide teasers, trailers, previews, updates
- From YouTube: Share viral videos
The underlying philosophy of these corporate entities in using Facebook is putting your customer’s interests first.
The educator who wants to leverage on social media must want to put the learner’s interests first. “What do you want to learn and how?” should be key drivers instead of this is the way I teach and this is what I choose to let you know.
by Lori Greig
I spent a small part of last Friday reading all of the contributions and comments at one of the NIE confessions on Facebook. It was probably the most popular of the three I could find.
I walked away from the experience with three observations.
The first two were pointed out by participants of the confessions page. First, the use of English was much better than other confessions sites. Second, the page was not as popular as other confessions pages. Both these observations are understandable when you consider the demographics of NIE.
The third thing I noticed was the self-policing that happened in that NIE confessions page. This is a good sign of the power of expression being balanced by social responsibility.
Most administrators and policymakers fear social media because they do not understand it. I hope that they now understand that good things can come going with the flow and even embracing it. Good things like greater transparency, brutal honestly, and professional responsibility.
Trawl the Web for tips on how to use Twitter and you will be inundated. There are tips for businesses, marketers, celebrity-wannabes, teachers, etc.
Perhaps a bit less common are tips on how NOT to use Twitter.
I have one such NOT tip and I use a segment of an Edutopia-produced video of Ngee Ann Secondary School to illustrate. But some disclaimers first.
No video paints a complete picture of the story it tries to tell. Ngee Ann Secondary is definitely not representative of schools in Singapore (no matter what Edutopia titles it). Some brushstrokes are wrong too (e.g., Ngee Ann Polytechnic is featured in the video).
Back to how not to use Twitter.
I get that we want to leverage on the mobile tools that learners already have. I support that cause.
But I am critical of strategies that are not rigorous and I refer to this segment in the video above (2min 29sec to 3min 15sec).
Anyone who has been on Twitter long enough knows that an egg avatar indicates a very new account, a mass-created account, or an account whose subscriber takes little or no ownership of it. If you are going to leave a digital trail in the form of a video, leave a wise one.
The example also showed a teacher asking a question and telling his students to tweet True or False answers. What value is there in doing that?
Do we want to leverage on the mobile tools that learners already have? Yes. Should we ask them to tweet when they can answer yes or no more immediately? I think not.
The teacher may have linked Twitter to a poll or quiz and that provides statistics, but the value was added to the teacher. The teacher might state with greater certainty that, say, 62% of the class understood the concept and 38% did not. What is the real value to the learner?
This is an example of technology use in the classroom. But there is no technology integration. It looks cool on the surface, but I think it is harmful in the long run if this sets the standard for practice and if the practice is perpetuated as acceptable or even sold as a “best” practice.
For technology to be integrated, it must be indispensable and bring value to the learner.
If there is some other way of answering a true/false question, then Twitter is not integrated. If Twitter is used simply because it is available as a mobile app, then it is not integrated.
How might Twitter bring value to students?
The cop-out method is to say students prefer short-form communication and to use that in class. That meets students where they are at, but it also keeps them where they are.
What students need to learn is how to be concise, how to summarize, or how to reflect on learning. The brevity imposed by Twitter is a means of achieving that.
To do that requires learners to move from simple understanding to complex and back to “simple” again. There is a construction of information and a deconstruction. The second process of simplification is a reconstruction. These are thinking skills that are far more important than content knowledge.
How should one NOT use Twitter? To do something you can already do plainly, traditionally, or with some other better technology.
How might one integrate Twitter into learning? Take advantage of the technical affordance of Twitter (140-character limit) to create social affordances (negotiate meaning) and pedagogical affordances (teach summarizing or critical thinking skills).
How should we NOT use Twitter? To pander to superficial needs.
How might we leverage on Twitter? Use it to teach students when NOT to use Twitter and how to use it responsibly.
In short, you should not use Twitter because it is cool or because students prefer short-form communication. You use it to teach them how to struggle with a problem and distill concise solutions.
To this tweet I say, why the negativity? Especially in light of the fact that the linked article merely reports the growing adoption of social media for professional development.
I ask my own question in return.
Should the perceived, unrealistic, or ignorance-based risks hold teachers back from adopting social media and Web 2.0?
Yesterday a racist statement trended in the Singapore Twitterverse.
Since it contains foul language, I am not embedding the screenshot here. Suffice to say that this was about a Chinese woman complaining about a Malay wedding.
Instead I will post one Twitter reaction to that Facebook rant:
A few might take that tweet to mean “keep your racist remarks to yourself”.
I would go further and say stamp racism or racist language out. I had to take such action against one student teacher recently.
I embed the tweet below. I have masked the name of the individual and other identifying elements but left my Twitter handle intact as evidence that it was copied to me.
The context was a request from that individual to change the NIE Blackboard interface so that it was more user-friendly. That was reasonable feedback until that person decided to change “black” to the highly-charged and derogatory n-word that refers to African Americans.
I tracked the person down and asked for permission from one of his tutors to meet with him during class. I let him know that such a term, while not used in the Singapore context, was very offensive. It has historical, social, and political significance that affects policies in the USA even today. Only African Americans use that term now in music or when referring to each other playfully.
The individual I confronted said that he was just playing with the word “black” and recombining it with “board”. That does not make it right if you know the history of the n-word. Look for it. It is just a Google search or a Wikipedia article away!
Amy Cheong and this individual share common traits. They comment or vent on social media without realizing that there are serious repercussions to what they say.
They also do not realize that what they say is wrong. There is something wrong with their value systems when nothing seems to be wrong.
Individuals like these must realize that:
- Remarks like their do not give them immunity simply because they are on social media
- They will be found out and confronted online and offline
- There is much to learn (often the hard way) when confronted
In Ms Cheong case, her employers took swift action. According to Yahoo SG she has been sacked. While she has been summarily dealt with, this helps her former employer (they got rid of a bad apple).
The saga for Ms Cheong may carry on (a grassroots leader has filed a police report). While events online come and go at twitch speed, digital memories stay burnt online thanks to tweets, FB posts, and blog entries like this.
There has been a spate of local news of inappropriate relationships between teachers and students, or of teachers behaving inappropriately. The most recent was a report of a teacher making video recordings in a toilet.
There has been the expected public vitriol and the “See? This is why we need values education!” response.
But one response that surprised me was how at least two schools imposed gag orders. One involved a principal a while back and the other was a more recent one involving a teacher. Students were not allowed to discuss the event that was happening in their own school. One school went so far as to cancel newspaper reading on the day and time reserved for just that.
The gag order is an old school and pointless move. The gag orders come an order too late in the era of social media. The discussion is already taking place, often based on rumour and hearsay.
I can understand a gag order where the press is concerned because the school authorities are in damage control mode. But part of damage control is to have an open and logical dialogue with the ones you should be caring about the most.
Students nowadays are no longer a passive audience. They have a voice and expect to use it. We should be showing them how to listen, analyze, and use that voice responsibly.
Hiding behind old school walls does not just model outdated behaviour. In this day and age, I would argue that such gag orders are irresponsible.
Such events, although undesirable, are authentic teaching moments. The learners are curious and motivated to know more. It is not the time to tell them to close the windows and doors, switch off their mobile devices, and only focus on their textbooks.
The events did not stem from textbooks and they will not be solved with textbook answers.
by romana klee
When I read the STonline headline, Social media to be included in revamped sexuality education in schools [MOE's press release], I thought, “Great, they are finding an important way to reach them so that they can teach them.”
But headlines can be deceiving.
I discovered that the social media elements are the content and “cyber” kind. That is, it does not look like they will be using social media to engage and sustain conversation. The focus is also on how to “guard against strangers on social media”.
There is nothing wrong with alerting kids about stranger danger. However, judging only from the press report, they are not leveraging on social media as a platform or strategy.
Social media like Facebook or Twitter could be used to solicit views via polls or short responses, share up-to-date resources, and extend conversations to the real world. Social media should not just be used to deliver content or to be content (e.g., stranger danger, cyberstalking).
If you do not take advantage of social media as a platform and strategy, then you might as well use a musty, dog-eared book. If you do not engage them, you will enrage them.
Is social media making us socially awkward?
Social media alone? No, no matter what the graphic below claims. Folks who allow the tools to dictate what they do? Yes, quite possibly.
If you play the numbers game and are easily swayed by “info” graphics, you might think that Singaporeans spend two-thirds of the time Facebooking.
Social media helps you connect in ways you cannot do so face-to-face. It augments socialization when time, space, and circumstances separate people.
But it does not, cannot, and should not replace face-to-face socialization. People intuitively understand that no matter what the numbers tell you.
This is a tongue-in-cheek reaction to an over-dependence on social media. Enjoy!
Some of us have probably thought of making citizen arrests of inconsiderate drivers or wishing there was some sort of system to shame them.
Here in Singapore, at best (and worst) we have Stomp. But that putrid platform is a bad excuse for citizen journalism and does not make a dent in social justice.
It is so bad I am not providing a link to it. It should be stomped on and sent to journalistic hell.
In contrast, Parking Douche is a social media-based idea that leverages on ads and Facebook to name and shame errant drivers. It is a great example of social policing when the traffic police do not seem to be doing anything.
Too bad it is an Android-only app and limited to Russia for now (source).