According to Merrian-Webster online, (2011) networking is defined as "the exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically : the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business. i am finding more and more that the way we communicate and network with each other has a significant effect on how we learn and what we learn. I network through a range of tools such as blogs, wikis, email, podcasting and social networks. I learn a lot by collaborating with others in my field through Facebook and email. Educational blogs have also taken me to a new level of understanding my students and how they learn also.
The best tool for me are wikispaces and virtual files. I use wikis for all my classes. I am currently in Orlando, FL at the FETC 2012 conference and I have done a weeks worth of work through podcasting the lessons and using my wikispace. The students (6-8 grade) were excited to hear me teach online and some of them even went home and did the lessons. I am thrilled! I have virtual files for all my students so they can upload their work to the file and I can check it at school without having to print anything. I like being able to comment on the work and they give me feedback as well. I am trying to give them the learning environment they will be using in the next few years in high school.
When I have questions the internet is my greatest source. Finding additional resources to enforce what I have learned is also a big challenge. I am finding that blogs offer the best information and good old online library research also helps.
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Toney, T.(2011)Network Connections.Retrieved from http://toneyt.blogspot.com/2011/07/network-connections.
Webster-Merrian.(2011)Networking.Retrieved from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/networking