Use of Facebook in the Classroom

The first article I read about the use of Facebook in class was about the way to use it without really using it. The author was describing activities that a teacher could do using the interface of Facebook and how to integrate it in project at school. The author says that it is a way to keep the students motivated to do the tasks they have to do, but really? How could you really get them interested on their projects using a representation of what they use at least two hours per day back at home? Students have to use the real thing to be motivated and there is a lot of ways teachers can use Facebook to get students interested.

Some teachers must think that Facebook is useless, it is for personal use only and it should be outcast of a scholar environment, but they are wrong. This social media is a useful tool for education. In the article a 100 ways you should be using Facebook in your classroom, the author describes ways in which teachers can use Facebook for their classes. By creating a class group on Facebook with all the students in it, it gets easier for teachers to send them requests or course notes that the students will need. Teachers can even share video or link sites relate to class subjects. Students of these days are more comfortable to use Facebook to stay in touch with people than any other social media or e-mail addresses. It is the easiest way to reach the student and to deliver a message that needs to be heard by everyone.

Facebook can be seen as being a way to evaluate the participation of the students. The one who does not participate in class because they are shy, they do on Facebook. They can express themselves and ask questions on the class’s group and every student can exchange on that. The teacher can also evaluate their writing too. I think it enhances the collaborative learning aspect because students are more confident to respond online with a medium such as Facebook rather than in a classroom environment where they have to do it in front of the whole class.

One thing a teacher should always have in mind when using Facebook in class is that it is for class purpose only. The teacher has to set rules concerning the utilization of the Facebook group. The students must follow those rules set by the teacher. An example of what the teacher could set as a rule: “Student must not post anything personal on that group or any inappropriate pictures of them”. It must be professional. It is a good way to initiate the students to be careful on what they put on Facebook. The teacher has to make the group private using the Facebook settings. Click on that link and it will explain how to do it.

That we like it or not, Facebook is everywhere. Why do not we use it as a tool in class instead of presuming that we use it? Certain teachers already adapt their classes to use this tool and others will follow this path. The only thing that I wish for is that most of the teachers acknowledge the fact that Facebook has an educational purpose. That way we can evolve with our students into their virtual world. Using the tools that they work with each day it is only common sense for me. I will definitely use it in my classroom as a teacher.

sources

http://www.emergingedtech.com/2010/08/facebook-as-an-instructional-technology-tool/

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/igeneration/ways-to-use-facebook-effectively-in-class/15269

http://teacherstraining.com.au/how-to-use-facebook-in-the-classroom-without-compromising-your-professional-relationship-with-your-students/

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