October is Connected Educator Month, which means opportunities to participate in free events and activities online to grow your personal learning network on a global scale. The calendar of events includes free webinars, forums, guided tours, and contests. Connected Educators is an initiative of the Office of Educational Technology at the U.S. Department of Education.
“To become a connected educator, you must first become a connected learner. Connected learners develop networks and co-construct knowledge from wherever they live. Connected learners collaborate online, use social media to interact with colleagues around the globe, engage in conversations in safe online spaces, and bring what they learn online back to their classrooms, schools, and districts.”
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I’m using the CE Starter Kit to build new connections and skills. This “choose your own adventure” kit, by Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach and her Powerful Learning Practice company, provides one simple way to get more connected every day. It has links, videos, and activities that you can complete to earn badges. First, I completed my profile at edConnectr which then generated a beautiful map of people with similar interests, skills, and jobs. I can click on a pin to learn about a connection/person and contact them. The closer they are to the center of the circle, the more we have in common.
Day 1 I learned about the connected learning principles and saved a list of recommended books that should keep me busy for months. Day 2 introduced Web2.0 and included an activity using Google Docs. Today introduces Twitter with some suggested educators to follow. Tomorrow’s topic is hashtags, #CE13 being the hashtag for Connected Educator Month 2013. I’m choosing to participate on the days when the topics are relevant and beneficial to me. In addition to the Starter Kit, there are a variety of events and activities. For example, this evening the Connected Cafe opens with Steve Hargadon interviewing Dean Shareski and Vicki Davis. There’s also a book club kickoff.
I encourage you to sign up and get connected! See you online!