Sunday, August 23, 2009
Social Networks as Learning Tool? Absolutely!
The Unquiet Librarian is advocating for the use of social networking tools in the classroom in response to another article by Dana Boyd which claims bringing social networking into the classroom creates a "cognitive collision" and can be harmful to students. Hamilton and those who commented on this post claim that students cannot be expected to go out into the university or work world and use these tools for learning and professional/educational development if they are not taught to do this. I agree completely. Just as we teach them to read and be discerning in their choice and context of reading material, we should be teaching them how to take advantage of these digital tools and use them responsibly. David Phelps has an article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune called "You have the right to remain silent... and tweetless" talking about the legal ramifications of anything posted online even if it is on Facebook or Twitter and meant as a private conversation. Doug Johnson added a link to the article on his "Blue Skunk Blog" advising potential criminals to simply use the phone. The first discussion leads directly to this article. Where and how will students be instructed on 1) what is available to them in the digital world 2) how to use them effectively and productively 3) real-life application and consequences of both proper and miss-use. The school, specifically the media center, is ideal for this. In fact the Standards for 21st-Century Learners demands we do this.