Teachers can find professional networking online. Educational sites afford convenience, privacy, and expertise in a variety of educational areas. There are also interactive activities for teachers joining an online community. Here are a few advantages to connecting online:
· Current educational topics discussed by experts and educators in a timely, thorough manner. For example, the latest input on educational technology use in the class, special education innovations, and school-wide interventions such as social and emotional interventions are hot topics currently inspiring teachers in their professional pursuits.
· Convenience and privacy comes with networking online. Professional development is generally limited to scheduled on-campus staff or team meetings, conferences, or District trainings. A teacher may have a question or comment on a topic with no opportunity during these gatherings, or the teacher feels the question or comment is too basic or too sophisticated for the discussion. Educational sites can provide a responsive venue through articles, group discussions, webcasts, videos or a search by a teacher using key words at the teacher’s convenience.
· Opportunities to investigate new teaching areas and/or extend teaching expertise abound through sites that are specific to educational technology, special education, or improved teaching methods. A teacher may want more information about learning disabilities, for personal or professional reasons, and find helpful information and professionals online. Maybe a video demonstrating a specific lesson would be very helpful. There is an abundance of sites to enhance a teacher’s knowledge and methods.
Here are well-established educational sites excellent for teacher connections.
Edutopia This is an attractive, vast website that is has numerous educational topics: experts and educators writing articles, groups to join, videos, classroom guides. Edutopia is a great support for teachers.
Edudemic is a clear, concise, and thorough guide to educational technology, blended and flipped learning, and educational innovation using technology. There are many guidelines on a wide variety of topics that a teacher may not even have enough background in ed tech to ask about. For a teacher wishing to deepen knowledge of ed tech, or a beginner hoping to catch up--Edudemic is very effective.