My personal approach:
I have developed a strong Professional Learning Network tailored to my needs through a few different mediums:
Twitter – my most powerful PD tool because of who it connects me to.
- Follow lots of teachers who tweet about teaching (particularly your subject!). Start here and expand as you go.
- Talk back to those teachers to engage in conversation, ask questions, find resources.
- Participate in twitter chats (my personal favorite is #statschat, which “meets” weekly on Thursday nights at 9 EST/8 CST)
- Find and use common hashtags to get in discussion with many who you may not follow
Blogging – Twitter is only 140 characters at a time, and is harder to include multiple resources in more coherent, longer, thoughts
- Share class materials, and ask for feedback
- Be a reflective practitioner by following the progression of certain themes in your classroomCollaborate
Tools for making the most of Twitter:
- List of Education focused Twitter Chats: bit.ly/officialchatlist
- TweetChat (a site for following twitter chats): http://tweetchat.com/
- TweetDeck – https://about.twitter.com/products/tweetdeck
Great Twitter implementation ideas:
- Student interaction with professionals – Create your own hashtag based chat, connect with professionals who would be willing to talk with students on twitter, let students moderate – Example: The Easiest Outreach You Will Ever Do by Adam Taylor
What happens when teachers collaborate online:
Very non-comprehensive list:
- Mr. Shah’s Filing Cabinet – catalog of teacher resources and activity ideas
- MathTwitterBlogoSphere – a list of sites, posts, etc. that have grown out of the online math teacher community
- Math Munch – A weekly blog from a few math teachers seeking to spread the cool things happening in math beyond the curriculum