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Ways to use Facebook effectively in class | ZDNet


Ways to use Facebook effectively in class

By Charlie Osborne | April 2, 2012, 8:30am PDT Summary: How to use Facebook as a classroom resource rather than a gimmick. Can social media be used effectively in class? There is a growing number of education professionals that believe the answer is yes. Although you may scan your Facebook or Twitter feeds in the morning and see nothing more interesting than what someone had for breakfast this morning, there are many valuable education resources that can be exploited by teachers in the classroom. Facebook as a communication platform can be used to present ideas, for online discussions, to share interesting and relevant material including websites, video and images and as a way for educators to connect with their students.

There is concern from school administrators and teachers that connecting to students online may have more detrimental effect than benefit due to inappropriate communication or content, privacy exploitation or cyberbullying. However, if the correct strictures are put in place and content is monitored, then social media can become a valuable an interactive teaching tool. Here are ten ways to use Facebook in class: 1.) Set up a dedicated Facebook group for your class A Facebook group can allow your students to create discussion boards, communicate with each other and their teacher, and can be linked with online projects & other classroom groups. Teachers can use these groups to send out mass messages, reminders, and potentially even post homework assignments. Rather than link your personal account as a teacher, it may be more appropriate to create a class only profile instead. It may be worth discussing digital citizenship with your students beforehand; and ensure they friend this account after updating their own privacy settings.

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Ways to use Facebook effectively in class | ZDNet

Links of interest: How to create a Facebook group for your class 2.) Use Facebook Apps Facebook is more than a place to tag photos from last nights not-so-clever encounter with tequila. It is now a platform that runs on mobile devices, and can be integrated with applications designed for learning. From news to learning a new language, there are many apps that allow searches and sharing across the platform. Links of interest: Facebook Study Groups We read Fun educational apps 3.) Follow news feeds If your students are working on a project involving anything from current affairs to piracy, Facebook news feeds can be an alternative to Twitter in order to enrich a project with real-time opinion and commentary. Not only this, but you can sign up and join groups focusing on certain areas; such as student education, U.S. healthcare, or politics. 4.) Practice foreign languages As a traveler and advocate of language learning, I found Facebook to be one of best resources in which to find language buddies to practice your writing skills in a secondary language. There are groups that are dedicated to this and you can get feedback on your attempts. It is also possible to find events and links to language-based resources. Links of interest: Practice languages via Skype Practice Spanish Daily French practice 5.) Follow figures of interest This can be done on both Twitter and Facebook, especially since the Timeline roll-out and subscription service began. You do not have to be friends with the person you wish to follow as long as they allow subscriptions to their profile, any public updates will appear in the news feed. Links of interest: Facebook and public figures 6.) Use the Facebook Timeline for class projects The Facebook Timeline feature may not be the sites most popular update, but it can be used to create a project more interesting than a traditional Power Point presentation. Links of interest:

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Ways to use Facebook effectively in class | ZDNet

Facebook Timeline tutorial Example: The school food project 7.) Use Facebook Questions and polls Why not upload a photo to your class Facebook group and ask your students to comment? There are cases of this feature being used as a way to ask questions or set a class task such as identifying a species of animal or important figure. Polls can be also used for research, opinion, or to generate a later classroom discussion. Links of interest: Example: Bishops University 8.) Use Facebook to send messages, communicate and collaborate Facebook is an alternative to sending mass emails out to your students so why not use it? Join them all as a group, and post messages, homework, reminders and updates. Links of interest: How teachers can use Facebook safely 9.) Share multimedia As a means to enrich learning, resources can be shared across the social networking site. Videos, website links, images and real-time updates from relevant groups, publications or figures can all be exchanged and commented on. For classroom projects or revision purposes, these features can be invaluable for students. 10.) Collaboration All of these tips hinge on one element that is becoming more important in modern student learning methods the need to collaborate on projects. This is why social media is an important educational resource; by allowing real-time contribution to projects, discussion and communication through a tool that many students already use and are comfortable with.

Image credit: Johannes Fuchs Related: Your grammar is terrible. Get off Facebook Beware Facebook while studying? How do students use tech to cheat? Irish data protection watchdog rules on Facebook Can Twitter be of use to academics? The Facebook Timelines anti-drug campaign Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily e-mail newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it. Facebook, Educaton, Student, Learning, Twitter, Charlie Osborne 5 Comments Add Your Opinion

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Ways to use Facebook effectively in class | ZDNet

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The Social Media Bandwagon

mpage@... 16 hrs ago Using social media for education is currently a big topic. Oftentimes teachers don't take the time to fully grasp the pros and cons of using tech in their classroom. The bandwagon effect seems to... Read Whole Comment + View in thread Expanded View 50 Per Page

0 Votes + Great article

facebook@... 3 days ago A refreshing read.

PreviousNextPreviousNext 1 Vote + Facebook - An Unstable Environment

LollyB13 21 hrs ago I would suggest that Facebook is not the way to go. The suggestions in the blog are fantastic, all of which can be accomplished in Google. The environment is terribly unstable. The potential of non-educators getting access to information about students and sending unfavorable photos their direction (happened!) makes me encourage teachers to stay clear of Facebook.

1 Vote + Facebook as a teaching tool - you're kidding, right?

Sonja L 20 hrs ago An educator encouraging students to join facebook in a school setting so businesses can mine data is absolutely insane. We don't need to help facebook create a huge customer database at the expense of our privacy. There are other ways to connect with kids using internet without giving away our personal info. I don't send my kids to school to use facebook or twitter. This "sexy" new "trend" of "digital learning" is merely an opportunity created by outside businesses who have discovered how to steal public education funding for their private profit: /politics/2011/10/jeb-bush-digitial-learning-public-schools We need to put more funding into teacher training and make it a well-paid, respectable profession (like the Finland model) and get these business guys out of the picture. Until academics are respected and we are properly funded (California pays $50,000 per inmate in jail as opposed to $8667 per student in K-12) we will see our public school system destroyed by those who only see our children as a "business

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Ways to use Facebook effectively in class | ZDNet

opportunity". Our children are not "widgets" and only have one chance at an education.

0 Votes + The Social Media Bandwagon

mpage@... 16 hrs ago Using social media for education is currently a big topic. Oftentimes teachers don't take the time to fully grasp the pros and cons of using tech in their classroom. The bandwagon effect seems to topple all common sense. Social media can be used in the classroom, but teachers need to focus more on primary source content as opposed to reposting or short "sound bites". The are many collaborative tools that fit the bill far better than Facebook, such as Google Apps. With all that said social media sites can be used to take a pulse of current themes or to propagate a message or resources.

0 Votes + Free Facebook Resources

newteacherhelp 16 hrs ago Facebook may be unstable, but it does house some of the best free educational resources on the Internet. You can find lesson plans, videos, website links, and other stuff related to the new Common Core State Standards at this link:

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