Social Networking


Picture for Social Networking

Image by aqhong (Access 10/12/2009)

Short description

Social networking sites are websites where users create personal profiles and connect with each other. The idea behind the sites is to link up with your friends and see who they are friends with and their friends’ friends.

Process description

Social networking sites excel at creating and highlighting social connections. You can usually send massages to and chat with other users, and some sites allow you to create personalized webspaces. Facebook, MySpace, and LinkedIn are some of the common examples.

When used for learning, the easy communication and connectivity of such sites can be helpful in supporting and strengthening connections between both the teacher and students and between students.

One use for social networking sites is to set up collaborative problem solving. By allowing the students to discuss a problem with each other they can bounce idea off of each other and find a solution together. This use of social networking is likely already happening, with students discussing course related subjects among themselves. By participating in or directing this discussion, a teacher can influence the discussion and assist if the problems prove too difficult.

Another use is as a way to share files and news quickly. If someone has a file that the rest of the course could use, they can quickly share it with the rest. Mind the copyrights when doing this, though. This can also be used by teachers to share course material and slides. Some schools and universities are already doing this, including official Facebook and MySpace pages, Youtube channels, and official presences in online games like Second Life.

Social networking sites can also be used to allow the students to create profiles and establish their course identity with new profiles created specifically for the course, either as a part of the course, or because the students want to keep their private profile separate from their course profile.

Required resources

You will need an internet connection and the course participants will all need to be members of the same social networking site. With younger students, this is likely already the case. You will also need to be somewhat proficient in the chosen social networking site if you want to participate in the social networking yourself.

Examples

A good reason to use social networking sites in learning is that many younger students are already avid users of social networking sites, and are used to communicating like that.

Social Networking in plain English:

Comments

This example is developed in relation to the two EU projects COMBLE (https://www.comble-project.eu/).

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/social-networking

Social Bookmarking


Picture for Social Bookmarking

Image by inju (Access: 12.11.2009)

Short description

Social bookmarking is a way to share internet bookmarks with others. They work more or less like the bookmarks in a web browser, except you share them for others to see and use.

Process description

Like standard web bookmarks, the social bookmark is only a link to the content, not the content itself. To create a social bookmark you create an account on a social bookmarking website, and start adding links to your profile. Usually, these social bookmarking sites will have a plugin for your web browser to make this easier to do.

Social bookmarking for learning can be used in a setting where all the students subscribe to the teacher’s bookmarks and get all the links and references that the teacher adds. That way, everyone has the same links and online materials. Expanding on that, the students can make bookmarks of their own and share them with each other, creating a social bookmarking network. This network can be used to find many websites relating to the subject and can become a solid collection of information.

By subscribing to each other, you can share interesting sites with each other and help each other catch useful web links that you might otherwise have missed. This can also be useful in an administrative fashion where if you find something that would be useful to someone else, you can social bookmark it.

You can also add so-called "tags" to you links. With the tags, your bookmarks become easy to find both for you and the people you share it with as it’s possible to search for these tags, both on your own and others’ profiles. It is also possible to subscribe to other people’s bookmarks, allowing you to instantly see when they add a new link to their profile.

Required resources

You will need an internet connection and an account on at least one social bookmarking website.

Comments

This example is developed in relation to the two EU projects COMBLE (https://www.comble-project.eu/).

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/social-bookmarking

Texting


Picture for

Photo by Nils Geylen (retrieved on 15.10.2009)

Short description

Learn to express thoughts concisely.

Process description

  1. Participants are asked to send a fictional text message with 11 words to a person they know (school director, school board member, spouse, child, etc.) at the end of a meeting or after a session of a conference.
  2. The messages are then read aloud.

Required resources

  • Paper
  • Pencil

Examples

Positive atmosphere:

  • Sharpened perception
  • 5 days really learning by doing
  • An intensive week with many experiences
  • Doubts disappeared
  • Model actually feasible
  • Successful week
  • Great methods

Feedback:

  • Tiring discussion
  • Extravagant claims
  • Dreamers and malcontents
  • Utter frustration

Comments

The restriction helps to concentrate on the most essential substance. Severe brevity of the form can generate linguistic creativity.

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/sms

It's a Small World


Picture for It's a Small World

Image by angel_shark (Access: 29.09.2009)

Short description

Students will choose an animal they think they would like to have for a pet. They try to find out what environment they would have to build/create to keep this pet at their home. Students will write, in letter format, a convincing argument to justify why they should be allowed to have this animal for a pet. Students will present their argument to the class. The letter should include a picture of their pet, a description of a healthy environment for their pet, its needs (special foods, etc.) and more.

Process description

  1. Read the background of this activity to the class.
  2. Discuss what the students should be looking for when they conduct their research at big chalk.
  3. Write an example of the kind of notes they should take.
  4. Go over Activity 1 with students.
  5. Have students individually explore the Internet to learn more about a favorite animal.
  6. Complete Activity 1. Outline of Procedure – Day 2
  7. Students should finish Activity 1 if it isn’t complete. Using the notes they took and Activity 1, students should write a convincing argument to persuade their parents to let them have this pet.
  8. Students should sketch pictures of the housing they will provide for their pet and include ideas on how they will support it (i.e., pay for its care!). Outline of Procedures – Day Three
  9. Students should be given 10 minutes to put their work together in a folder or notebook.
  10. Student should read their argument to the class.
  11. Students should turn in their notebooks.

Required resources

  • Computer with access to the Internet
  • Paper
  • Colored pens or pencils
  • Miscellaneous art materials as outlined

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/small-world

Simulation


Picture for Simulation

Image by FlyingSinger (Access: 01.10.2009)

Short description

Simulations are a useful teaching strategy for illustrating a complex and changing situation.

Process description

Simulations are used to put the student in a "real" situation without taking the risks. Simulations are meant to be as realistic as possible where students are able to experience consequences of their behavior and decisions. Simulations are commonly used in social studies and science but can be used in other curriculum areas.

Computer simulations are quite common in today"s virtual world.

Simulations are a useful teaching strategy for illustrating a complex and changing situation. Simulations are (necessarily) less complex than the situations they represent. In a simulation, the learner acts, the simulation reacts, the learner learns from this feedback. For the students to learn what you intend for them to learn from the simulation, you must hold a discussion during and/or after the game. This is integral to the students" learning. Practicalities have to be explained before the simulation and outcomes debriefed afterwards.

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/simulation

Scavenger Hunts


Picture for Scavenger Hunts

René Ehrhardt (Access: 02.11.2009)

Short description

The Internet is an enormous collection of answers. The challenge is to find them. Scavenger hunts help students discover how diverse this information resource truly is. Through scavenger hunts students also gain experience harnessing the Internet and strengthening Internet browsing skills. Developing a scavenger hunt is one method teachers can use to teach academic concepts and teach navigation skills to students.

Process description

  1. The teacher develops a series of questions and gives the student a link to the URL that will answer the question.
  2. The teacher may take the following steps:
    1. Identify an idea/concept that he/she would like to reinforce or introduce.
    2. Search for web sites that reinforce/introduce the concept.
    3. Develop questions that may be answered at the site.
    4. Save it to a web site, put it on the computer, or give students a paper handout.
  3. The students use the information found at the web sites.

Required resources

Computer, Internet

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/scavenger-hunts

RSS


Picture for RSS

Image by Tiago Pinhal (Access: 15.12.2009)

Short description

RSS (Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary) is an Internet tool, which allows you to send out summaries of what’s new on a website in the form of headlines and summaries.

Process description

Using this you can send out information from your website and have the recipients see it, even if they haven’t visited your website today. A series of RSS publications from the same source is called an "RSS feed". RSS feeds are commonly seen on websites that update often, like news sites or blogs. To read an RSS feed, you will need an RSS reader of some kind. It can be a standalone program, or a part of an internet browser or email program.

If you use RSS for learning, it is useful to have access to a website that updates on a somewhat frequent basis and with an RSS set up. The students will need an internet connection and an RSS reader to be able to subscribe to your website. When the RSS is set up, the updates on the website can automatically be sent out to the RSS subscribers who will be able to see the updates without needed to keep an eye on your website. This is extremely useful when it comes to sudden updates, like rescheduling of classes or similar urgent administrative messages.

It is also possible to use RSS as a news collector, by setting up a subscription to several different RSS feeds and collecting information from these. This allows both teacher and student to gain an overview of the field covered by the RSS feeds. It is important to choose the relevant RSS feeds that match the course and materials that the students could want to use.

RSS can also be used to make the students into the RSS authors. By having each student create their own RSS feed and have them subscribe to each other, to form a collaborative network where both students and teacher share RSS updates about the subject at hand. This is similar to using social bookmarks, but with RSS, the students are not just finding material to share, but actively creating it. Some blogs have a built in RSS feed generator, which can help with the technical parts of it.

Required resources

You need computers and an internet connection. An internet server with RSS enabled is also helpful to have, or some kind of blog software with RSS built in.

Comments

The image on this page is provided as an illustration only, and is not an actual active RSS feed.

This example is developed in relation to the two EU projects COMBLE (https://www.comble-project.eu/)

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/rss

Rasender Reporter


Bild zur Methode Rasender Reporter

Foto von Egon Erwin Kisch (abgerufen am 12.10.2015)

Kurzbeschreibung

Mit dieser Methode wird die Beantwortung von Fragen im Stile einer Reportage oder Befragung geübt.

Ablauf

  1. Jeder Teilnehmer erhält oder erarbeitet einen Fragebogen zum gestellten Thema.
  2. In der anschliessenden Fragerunde sucht sich jeder einen Interviewpartner und sammelt Antworten zu den Fragen.
  3. Auswertung zu den Interviews und den thematischen Inhalten.

Benötigte Tools und Materialien

Offline:

  • Fragebogen
  • Stifte

Online:

  • Webkonferenzsystem
  • Telefon

Kommentare

Falls es möglich ist, schaffen Sie etwas Platz zum Herumlaufen. Die Befragung könnte auch im Freien durchgeführt werden, wenn es das Wetter erlaubt. Die Auswertung kann im ersten Schritt in kleinen Gruppen erfolgen.

Round of keys


Picture for Round of keys

Photo by otodo (Access: 06.10.2009)

Short description

A guided activity for getting to know members of a group.

Process description

At the beginning of a session, all participants introduce each other with the help of their key chain. They say their name, show their keys, explain what they are for and tell some stories about themselves or the significance of the keys. They may also explain in which way the key is related to the topic of the seminar.

Required resources

  • key chains

Examples

"My name is Uwe. This is the key to my bicycle chain, which is very important to me because I am an avid cyclist. I ride my bicycle to improve my fitness."

Sample 1:

/methods/round-of-keys/keys1.jpg

Sample 2:

/methods/round-of-keys/keys2.jpg

Comments

If participants do not have a key chain, they can refer to their keys from memory or use other objects to describe. For example you can ask your students to describe the clothes they are wearing at the moment or the content of their bags or pockets.

For on-line: you can ask your students on forum, chat or videoconference to describe ojects on their desks or in the room they are sitting. Facilitator should encourage participants to talk about the personal significance of the objects rather than just naming or describing them.

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/round-of-keys

Role reversal


Picture for Role reversal

Image by rlcasey (Access: 08.02.2010)

Short description

In role reversal participants have a chance to facilitate group discussions by taking up the role of a course facilitator. At the same time, the facilitator participates in all of discussions in the role of a learner (commenting, asking questions, answering, etc).

Process description

  1. Learners are divided into groups (8 - 15 people).
  2. To each of the groups, a leader is assigned (one of the given group members).
  3. The facilitator creates either disscussion forum or chat room for the activity.
  4. The facilitator emails each of the participants with the information about the activity, expectations of the facilitator and a list of learners from a group a given learner has been assigned to.
  5. The course facilitator informs the learners that their peers will facilitate the activity.
  6. The chosen facilitators have one or two days to prepare.
  7. When they are ready, synchronous or asynchronous discussions on a given subject(s) begin. The "real" course facilitator also takes part in discussions.
  8. At the end of the activity, each of the chosen group facilitators post at least three things they learned due to the experience of being the online course facilitator.

Required resources

  • discussion forum or chat

Comments

In this activity, also pairs or groups can play the role of a facilitator.

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/role-reversal