We have already covered some of the reasons why your students should be blogging in 2013. However, that’s not the only thing recommended for them as there is something else that can be considered as a cross-curricular activity and can be used to develop new skills. Students can now find career-building courses in different industries – from criminal investigation courses to paramedic to RN programs in healthcare – as well as find employment opportunities.
That something else is social media. It’s on the boom and if your students haven’t been introduced to social media learning, they’re missing out a world of opportunities to learn and expose themselves to potential employers. If you’re still unsure about student learning through social media, here are some of the reasons that will help you to consider the platform for the classroom in 2013.
Social media platforms such as Twitter allow for massive participation that would otherwise be impossible in a regular class due to restrictions and the room available for students to adjust. Students are also able to reinforce messages and challenge themselves through the online classroom.
You would be surprised when sources you never knew about will be cited by your regular students and students you’re not teaching at the moment due to massive outreach. The level of outreach also means there’s no limited number of participants who can join in the discussion. You can tweet and retweet anything that is related to what you teach in class on a particular day, and you’ll be impressed by the regular stream of input and ideas from students.
Close communication and faster discussions
Social media can be used in a classroom setting both at graduate and undergraduate levels. It will give you time for out of the class discussions and students will be able to get in touch with you and ask questions as they’ll be comfortable with space where they know you are just a wall post away.
Not only introducing social media will give you more time to spare with students, but it also allows you to give individual attention to those who may not be comfortable speaking to you inside the class and around other students. In addition, it will provide students the opportunity to carry out discussions with each other, and they can interact with each other faster than you can reach them. To build a trusted environment that aids the learning process, try to be the ‘side guide’ rather than the ‘stage setter’ on social media classroom discussions.
Connect students with companies
If you teach a class at the graduate level, the students will be looking for employment after graduation completes. You can connect them with potential employers by teaching them how to utilize social media to look for employment opportunities and increase their chances of getting hired through networking and building their portfolio.
For example, you can help students with a LinkedIn profile and show them how the platform can be used to connect with employers of high-paying companies.
While there may be concerns regarding the platform’s adoption in classrooms at a wider scale, the use of modern learning tools like social media can foster a lot of benefits, which are far greater than the risks involved.
Furthermore, companies like Edmodo are working on virtual classroom management systems that are secure and allow teachers to use modern learning tools to provide an innovative educational experience.
These are a few reasons to introduce social media in your lesson plans. Have you used the Internet to teach your students?