PLN: Your Personal Learning Network Made Easy

A great source on how to build your PLN!

Once a Teacher....

What is a PLN?

If I had to define what a ‘Personal Learning Network’ is, I would keep it simple and broad:

n. – the entire collection of people with whom you engage and exchange information, usually online.

Personal Learning Networks, or PLNs, have been around forever.  Originally, they were your family and friends, maybe other educators you worked with, but as the internet and web 2.0 tools have become nearly ubiquitous, PLNs can include tons of different communities – social networking sites like Facebook, blogs, Twitter, wikis, social bookmarking tools, LinkedIn, and so many more.  Basically, anyone that you interact with is apart of your PLN, whether they are social contacts, professional peers, or experts in their field.   Most of the ‘learning’ takes place on-line now, because it is simple to find and connect with others with similar interests from around the world.

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Community Management

This is a TedTalk by Mark Wills on online community.

I liked that he talked about community management as one of the important points of online community.

He stated that members of the community are the community managers. The community empowers members to run the community. All members need to commit to the values of the community.


The Community Guidelines

I like to search for interesting infographics on The site also has a community guideline that I believe is important and helpful for the members to know and respect.

Among the guideline is be real human beings because the community only limits memberships to active professional in the elearning field, which I believe to be relevant for the community. They want to keep the posting and discussions constructive within the field and not deal with anonymous trolls. Therefore, the community encouraged members to sign in with their Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Google profile.

The administrator also highlight out a very important point, which is not to publicly share any personal information such as phone numbers and addresses. I believe this is a good reminder of an online community since some of us might think that it’s fine to share personal things on the web, which is not!



11 Tips for powering online community

This slideshare contains 11 tips on how an online community facilitator power the community.

I especially liked tips #11 that is the “Hotseat” This tool enable members of the community to ask the person on the Hotseat over a set period of time. I believe this will stimulate active participation among members of the community.

Check it out to find more!

Formative assessment tools

I found this information while exploring Pinterest. You can click here to the original post.

The author listed 10 formative assessment tools that can be used by teachers in the classroom. I think Kahoot is very interesting because teachers can create quizzes from the web content and students can answer the quizzes in real time by using their mobile devices. Moreover, it’s FREE!

Other tools are:

Infuse Learning



Poll Everywhere


Backchannel Chat



Collaborize Classroom 


Check them out!


Assessing with social media

Here‘s a link on how to use several social media tool for formative assessment.

I personally think that the example of how to use Instagram to assess students on math theorem is interesting. The author stated that

A math teacher halts a lecture, projects incomplete math theorems on the board, and then assigns a different problem to each of several small groups. The twist is that the students post a photo of their written progress to Instagram every 90 seconds so that the instructor can monitor responses in real time.

I also agree that the hashtags feature on Twitter enable instant formative assessment. The author also describe how moderator can create Tweet Chat and discuss specific topic. The discussion can be captured and assessed by teachers.

Do you have other idea of how to use social media for formative assessment?

Make your Chemistry in Context Video!

Here’s a YouTube video of a professor from the University of York on reasons on why he asked his students to make YouTube videos for his Chemistry class assessment.


#1 Impact

#2 Education

#3 Comedy

#4 Artistic Merit

#5 Location

#6 Engaging New Audiences

It’s really interesting to see how one of his students explained about polymer in aviation in the air! Great effort and really showed how Chemistry in context works.