Social Media – Resources for Educators

by Jean Tower

Here are a couple of resources about social media – in education, in our students’ lives, in our schools. Thank you to Max Weinstein formerly of Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, President and Executive Director of StopBadware.Org, for bringing these to my attention.

The first resource is a guide for educators about Facebook. Here is a quote from this site:

A few months ago, Facebook recognized that a guide like this was needed. They asked me to write it.  I accepted the offer on the condition that I could write without filtering or restrictions from Facebook.  Facebook saw the value of a candid third-party opinion and agreed. Why did Facebook ask me?  Well, I’ve written two books about Facebook for parents, and I teach parents, students, and educators about Facebook all over the U.S.  But most important, I am the mom of eight children, ages 12 to 27 (and yes – I gave birth to every one of them!).  I know firsthand how Facebook affects families, kids, and education.

The site has video tutorials about topics such as, Facebook groups, and has links to many (reviewed) resources.

The second resource is a video posted on You Tube, Embracing a Culture of Connectivity.


The posted description:

Many young adults have incorporated social media into their daily practices, both academically and personally. They use these tools to connect, collaborate, communicate and create. In this talk, Danah Boyd — Social Media Researcher at Microsoft Research New England and affiliate of the Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society — examines the different social media practices common among young adults, clarifying both the cultural logic behind these everyday practices, and the role of social media in academia.

This video is 54 minutes, but well worth your time.  Judy Singer, in her welcome to the group at the event said:
“The rate of change in technology and how it is going to influence how we teach is something that I think most of us are having a hard time even keeping up with and what we’re trying to do here today is to bring together resources from across the university so you can hear how colleagues are thinking about this problem space, both in terms of very concrete kinds of things – we’ll be having demonstrations outside, but also in terms of the thought processes about why are they doing this, why are they changing what they’ve been doing quite happily for many years.  [It is] because the students around us are changing so much more rapidly than we can ever think about.”

Check out these resources and share them with your colleagues. We need all educators to be aware and involved and able to join in and lead conversations about social media in our schools.

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