A Personal Learning Network (PLN) is a group of people you communicate with to share ideas, experiences, and resources to increase your own learning. PLNs allow for collaborative learning from local teachers to educators around the world. All the work we have been doing in EDM510 has been contributing to our own Personal Learning Network. I realize I need to get a better handle on all the contacts I have made and organize them into one space. I just haven't had the time this semester, so the organization of my own PLN will be added to my Personal Development Plan (which only included reinstating my teaching certificate) for 2014!
My PLN includes:
Following on Twitter : 49 education or technology based accounts and individual educators
As of now, the only hash-tag I have been consistently following:
In addition to EDM510 student blogs and Dr. Strange, other blogs I follow:
Lisa Nielson - The Innovative Educator
Natalie Turbiville - Walking in Mathland
Blogging About the Web 2.0 Connected Classroom
Manaiakalani - Living Local Learning Global
Dangerously ! Irrelevant
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
In my professional life, I am a member of the American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) and a member of the MS Gulf Coast Chapter that meets monthly at various locations on the Mississippi Coast. Members of this group are comprised of professional educators through the college level and business professionals that have a vested interested in employee training and development. I also have a Linkedin profile and have made contacts from all over the world who are interested in and work in the same type of industry as myself.
Since using Facebook is frowned upon in my workplace, but the advantage of social connections is recognized, my employer has its own internal version of Facebook, called Yammer. Use of Yammer is almost identical to Facebook. I find belonging to the different "groups" very helpful. Imagine going to a virtual group at work when needing a question answered and finding just the people you need from IT to Learning groups!
Yammer is a good tool but nothing beats my team of co-workers and west coast collaborators. They are anywhere from a few steps to a phone call away. Without the support of these people, I would not have the job knowledge I do today and I am proud to say I work with people who are not afraid to continue learning!
The more I learn about learning and how technology can enrich our experiences, the more I find! Managing information and choosing the most important and relevant of the pile will be a continual learning experience itself!