Thursday’s Tip: Facebook in the Classroom

Yesterday, we shared some thought-provoking links in our “HD_Links” feature. One of those links was to a school district’s Facebook policies. Facebook is thought to be a decidedly-noneducational diversion among our social media choices. However, to make schooling relevant to our students and families, we have to meet them where they are. Our students (and their parents) are on Facebook.

According to the Council Bluffs Community School District Guidelines for Facebook™ as a Parent Communication Tool, here are a few ways you can use Facebook in your classroom:

  • Status updates are an example of authentic writing opportunities, a key component of learning to write with a purpose and for an audience.
  • We all want more parental involvement. Facebook provides many tools for making classroom communication easy and seamless.
  • In addition to opening up avenues of communication, Facebook users have the ability to invite other users with event invitations.
  • With pictures, links, and notes, it’s even easier for teachers to share exemplary student work.

Additionally, here are some other educational uses for Facebook:

  • Different classes can be organized using the new groups feature. Additionally, this new tool allows collaborative documents.
  • Discussion forums are available in the older groups allow for discussions to take place outside of the public wall.
  • Students could create fake or imaginary Facebook profiles for historical or literary figures.
  • The new group chat function would allow for students and teachers to have a discussion without being in the same room. Imagine the opportunities during the many snow days we’ve had this winter.

What are some other ways you could imagine using Facebook in your classroom?

Zac Early is an instructional specialist with the eMINTS National Center.

5 thoughts on “Thursday’s Tip: Facebook in the Classroom

  1. I agree that we have to meet students where they are these days. Technology is forever changing the way we teach and reach kids. As a teacher I think the students are even more educated with technology and what is out there more than the teachers are. I know some of them know a lot more than I do. They seem to be “in the know” .Teachers and students are both realizing that there has to be a better way to educating students. There is a huge apathy problem that we face each day with our students. I honestly think finding their common interests and letting them take the lead and tell us what they want, we will be able to reach more and more students every day.

    I just started over this past week adding students and their parents on my facebook. I am hoping that I can do the same as you. Form groups by classes, and grade level and let them communicate with me from that aspect. When they are absent for example, we can talk about what they missed in school, or the other students can help each other with their homework, questions etc. I’m looking for it being a HUGE learning tool for parents and students to communicate with me and their child more. I’m hoping parents can have a better insight to understanding what is going on in the classroom as well. :)

    • The nice thing about using groups is that you can keep your personal Facebook account separate from student and parent eyes but still maintain open lines of communication.

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