Social Media in Education

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Social Media in the Classroom – Cool or Not Cool?

Facebook and texting are a part of every child’s life, but should it be part of the classroom?
More and more students come to school with their smartphones and have access to Facebook even when some schools block access on their computers. Many teachers we speak to say that it’s being more commonly used, but it should be used as a learning tool to facilitate teaching and learning in the classroom?
Online social networking programs such as Facebook and Twitter can be used to connect students and create a sense of belonging in schools. Social networking sites also create a forum for promoting  knowledge and boost instant communication between teachers and students as well as teachers and parents.
How technology can create a sense of belonging in the classroom
Communicating with students through the use of social media draws out introverted students so that they interact and become part of the community. By creating this sense of belonging, students are more likely to engage in, and hence promote, a more positive teaching and learning environment.
Privacy factor and the geek Information about Facebook in education
Whilst teachers are using Facebook more in classroom by creating fan pages, it is highly recommend not becoming “friends” with your students.  The “Facebook insights” allows fan page owners to view valuable information about who is accessing the page, and should you desire, you can ban a member who is not part of the “community”.
Protecting privacy therefore can be a big issue as the last thing you want is the student gaining admin rights to your fan page. While Facebook is FREE it does pose future discussion about how secure and safe it for educators as a teaching and learning tool, while others use it for other agendas.
What are the risks to teachers? What do you foresee as a future problem of using social media in the classroom. Join in the conversion, we would love to hear from you.