Today we hear and read about being a connected educator. What does that mean, what are we connected to and who are we connecting with.
There are probably a lot of ways to answer this, as well as understand the importance of connectivity. Today, as part of her blog challenge Jana Scott Lindsay blogged about Connectivity. A very worthwhile read.
I will also admit that for me recently not being in a school environment being connected has taken on a new meaning and importance.Here is my understanding of what it means to be connected.
We can longer view things from the four corners of our office or classroom, but rather we need to understand that the world is our classroom and office. So to be a connected educator, you need to see yourself as part of a global community. Recently I have connected in a more meaningful way with three people in my PLN. One lives in a rural part of Wisconsin, one in Brazil and one in Switzerland. My hope is to meet them all one day soon, but in any event, I feel connected to them and all three have become valuable members of my PLN and good friends.
We also need to be willing to connect to Social media and use it as a forum for professional learning and growth. Learning takes place 24/7 not just in seminars or during PD days and we need to embrace that in order to truly be connected.
We need to connect to and be willing to accept new ideas and learn from people all over the world.
Being connected today also means ones need to be willing to share your thoughts and ideas. People are interested in learning from you as well.
I will admit it is hard at times to grasp some of these concepts. How can people whom I never met are such good friends? And how and why do some many people care what an Orthodox Jewish rabbi has to say. That is the beauty of being connected. I am a better person, friend and educator because of it.
The bottom line is that to be connected and to develop and PLN we need to move out of the comfort zone of our four walls and reach out to the global community.
I don’t think in today’s society we can afford nor can out students afford for us not be connected with the global community.