Thursday, March 17, 2011

Final Project...Personal Learning Network

Though I am retired from public education, keeping my Alabama administrative licensure alive is a priority. To fulfill the requirements, I am participating in several technology-related online courses. This latest is entitled “Developing and Growing Personal Learning Networks.” The final project for the course is to answer this question on my blog, allowing classmates to comment, while I in turn comment on their responses:

Reflect on how your personal learning network has changed and grown during the course of this workshop. Discuss your plans for how you plan to continue to grow your learning network and how you hope to contribute to the professional learning of your administrative colleagues.

The change in my personal learning network can be summed up in one word…growth. More people are following me on Twitter, I am following more people, more have visited my blog, and I have subscribed to additional blogs. The larger the network, the more valuable the network becomes for all of its members. My recent post on the value of the first fax machine illustrates that concept.

Like a snowball rolling downhill, a PLN gathers momentum and volume. Just before beginning this post, I started following @RickWormeli (and if you have ever heard Rick speak, you know what a leader in the field he is.) How did I even know he was on Twitter? Fellow author and friend @BarbBlackburn retweeted @ToddWhitaker who was letting everyone know about @RickWormeli. So I started following both @RickWormeli and @ToddWhitaker. I look forward to the insight I can gain from both of these giants, and learn while sitting comfortably at home, waiting in line at the grocery store, or awaiting boarding at the airport. Learning can now happen anywhere.

The course has caused me to focus on why I do what I do. In the forum, I have found myself talking about why I blog and why I use Twitter. I also found myself expanding those thoughts into blog posts earlier this month. March has pretty much been social networking month on this blog!

Eye on Education picked up on this thread and posted a reference to three of my blog posts related to Twitter. A retweet of “How Can I View Twitter? Four ways to view/compose content on #Twitter” was one of Eye on Education’s 5 most popular tweets of the week.

Perhaps the most significant new concept for me is a very practical application of QR codes. You will see an example on the right-hand column of this blog…that black and white square that probably makes no sense. What is it? What does it do? Stick around. Those are other posts for other times, but they are coming…

Where do I go from here? Stay the course. Continue to play in the bigger game and do my best to say things worth hearing and hear the things too significant to miss. Come join me!
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