Sharing, Snow, Stranded, and other S words

So EduCon ended Sunday. Today is Wednesday. I am still not home. I am not vacationing, I am stuck. My flight Monday was cancelled. The earliest flight home is tomorrow morning. So I sit in my hotel room with my thoughts and entertainment from my friends.

One conversation from EduCon I have been reflecting on was Alec Couros and Dean Shareski lead about sharing. This is something that I have been dealing with internally and externally lately. One thing has been convincing parents to trust the teachers and allow their children to share online and they other is trying to figure out how to get students to share beyond casual conversation.

One thing that came up when talking with others at my table was how resistant kids can be about sharing ideas, thoughts, work, etc online. It is so natural for children to want to share things. To want to tell a story, yet the minute the medium for doing changes, it’s like they freeze or do the bare minimum.

We have to be patient when teaching them to share in ways they are not used to. Sharing has a huge impact on their learning and on learning of others. They need to know what they should share and what they shouldn’t. It takes them years to learn how to share in their elementary journals in notebooks, so it will take longer for them to learn do it in a public forum.

When I joined twitter over 2 years ago, it and facebook would not have been the first place I would have turned when finding out my flight was cancelled Monday. But it was. I did it again and again as flights were cancelled throughout the week. It took months of learning how to use the medium and months before relationships were formed. Thank goodness I did share, it helped me find a decent hotel (with free food), my friends kept me company through this lonely times, and even offered ways to help get me home or entertain me.

We know as educators the benefits of sharing globally, our students and sometimes their parents do not. We must teach this, we must encourage this, we must foster a desire for this. Most importantly we must be patient and let this skill develop. I need to remind myself of this as I read their first blog post this week.

If you have ideas that have worked, please share 🙂


5 Comments Add yours

  1. dunsiger says:

    What a great post, Amanda! With teaching young students, my problem is that they want to share too much. I need to spend a lot of time modelling what to share and what not to share. We usually make a list of this together. Giving some suggested blogging topics have helped too, as then the children know that what they’re sharing with regards to these topics is safe to do so. I’ve also used platforms like Edmodo or Twiducate to teach the students what they can share and what they can’t share in a far more private manner first. This has definitely been successful.

    On a different note, I think that it can also be hard for teachers to know how to share online. Some are very hesitant about doing so. I know that I’ve shared a lot with my staff through emails and PD presentations, and this has helped. Some of them are now on Twitter too, and they’re learning the benefit of sharing as well.

    I must say that I love how much you share on Twitter, and I absolutely love learning from you. Thanks for sharing all that you do, and I hope that you make it home safely soon too!

    Aviva (@grade1)

    1. amandacdykes says:

      I think online is a new medium for most! I remember being in high school and entering my first AOL chat room and awkwardness. Kids are getting better with facebook & texts, wish they knew how to take it from personal to professional (I think that is the word I am looking for)

  2. Royan Lee says:

    I have been thinking about this very thing. In fact, you
    know what they say about great minds? I just blogged about how we
    send mixed messages to kids to prevent them from
    sharing/collaborating. Sharing is natural. Being afraid to share is
    not (unless your a three-year-old:-). If we find students that are
    afraid to share, it’s something that’s wrong with our school
    cultures. I have great hope for our kids of today because I see
    them using tech to collaborate and share stuff whether they are
    given ‘permission’ to do so or not. I’m so glad you made it through
    that travelling nightmare. Hope you and your family are doing

    1. amandacdykes says:

      Great minds, eh? (like my Canadian accent?) I think you are correct they like to share. Remember when our classes skipped? They never where “um, I’m out of questions to ask or things to say” we just need to teach them that it’s ok. Thanks for your comment, very good stuff.

      I’m not home yet 😦 Flight tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully.

  3. ktenkely says:

    So glad that you made it home!
    It is so easy to forget that all of this is a process. We want students to jump right in and are baffled when they don’t because “they share all the time” but I think you are right, the medium matters and it takes a while for kids to learn how to use that medium. Often through trial, error, and mistakes.

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