Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Week 1 PLN: Introduction and Response to "A Teenager's View on Social Media"

Hello Everyone!

My name is Megan and I'm 26 years old. I have wanted to be a second grade teacher since I was in the second grade when I had one of my favorite teachers. Ironically enough, I now teach second grade. After graduating, I was hired as a Title 1 Tutor and held this position for one year. The majority of my day was spent with kindergarten and first grade, but I also helped with third, fifth, and sixth grade. After that year I was hired as a second grade teacher in the school district I currently work in. While I always wanted to teach second, I panicked. I had very little experience with this grade level and could no longer see myself teaching this grade. I fell in love with the K-1 students I worked so much with as a Title 1 Tutor. However, as I got started, the panic slowly wore off with the help of my amazing team. I am now in my fourth year as a second grade teacher and cannot imagine teaching any other grade. In my eyes, second is the perfect grade!

I graduated from Miami University in 2011 with a degree in Early Childhood Education (PK-3). In the summer of 2012 I studied at Walsh University to receive my 4/5 endorsement. I am currently attending Akron University working to obtain my reading endorsement and my master's degree in Early Childhood Education with a literacy focus.

The past two years I have been actively trying to live a healthier lifestyle by changing my diet and exercise habits. This has proved to be a great change for me, but not always an easy one, especially since my favorite things are pizza and chocolate. Through this new journey, I have found new hobbies: yoga, running, hiking, and biking. I have also had fun learning to cook new, healthy recipes. These have been great ways to manage the stress that can come from work and everyday life and help me feel good about me! Other than that, I love to hang out with my family and friends. I love trying new things and have recently ran in the color run, a 5k in my community, a Tough Mudder in North Carolina, and went skiing for the first time! I also love going to concerts and sports events. My favorite is Ohio State football games, but I also enjoy going to Browns, Cavs, and Indians games. In the summer you can most likely find me at the pool during the day with a book in hand!

The social media I currently use is: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat, Tumblr, Vine, GroupMe, and YouTube.  However, the ones I visit on an everyday basis are Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram. While I am on these sites daily, I do not post often. While I have LinkedIn, I have never really used it. Friends follow me and that's about the extent of that. I use Pinterest often mainly to find education resources, work outs, and recipes. I have been back and forth with Twitter over the past couple of years. I have never been one to tweet much, but follow friends, sports figures, and celebrities. This summer, however, after attending a technology conference, I began using it to follow educators, but have yet to fully get involved with this aspect of Twitter. GroupMe proved to be a very valuable outlet when I was coaching cheerleading the last three years. It helped me stay in contact with my cheerleaders and keep everyone informed. Other than videos posted on Facebook or for classes, I mainly only use YouTube for music purposes. I have not been on Vine in months and only posted a couple times, using it mainly just to watch other people's clips. Finally, I do not know much about Tumblr and only have an account because I found recipes on it that I wanted access to.

I cannot really agree or disagree with the social media applications he mentioned that I have not used before, however, in reference to the outlets I listed above, I mostly agreed with everything the author said in "A Teenager's View on Social Media." I view Twitter and Facebook as something that many people have access to and, regardless of my privacy settings, am careful what I post on these sites. This is a site that employers could easily see. I also agree that Facebook is the site that everyone has. Everyone from my little cousins to my grandparents have this website. People post many things all the time and every couple of posts ends up being an advertisement. In reference to Instagram, I enjoy this application over Facebook for the same reasons the author pointed out. There are no links, people do not post as much, and it is very easy to get caught up. Regarding the author's views on Snapchat, again, I agree. You can post whatever you want and there is no social pressure attached about how many likes and followers you have. However, the author did not mention how it is very easy for people to take a snapshot of your snaps and send them out to others. This is an issue that has been the reason for many high school students getting caught doing things they should not be doing. Lastly, I agree with his opening statement about Twitter. I do not always understand the purpose of Twitter and find it to be very random at times. Also, I have found that even though I have privacy settings, my tweets have shown up in Google searches with my name, which aligns with the author's statement that your tweets are easily searchable.

The way I represent myself to the world via social media has greatly changed over time. In college I didn't really think about what I posted and mainly only others my age had it. However, around the end of my undergrad social media became more popular with people of all ages. Since graduating, I have become very selective at what I post, initially because of my job search, but I choose to stay selective for the fact that many people have access to it, including employers, colleagues, and family members. At the end of the day, I don't want anything to come back and hurt my career or the way others view me due to a social media post. Therefore, when I post I always make sure that it is appropriate. While it may not always be for professional reasons (pictures and videos of pets, friends, family), I make sure that it is something I would not be embarrassed about if an employer, coworker, or student's parent saw it.

I have a hard time thinking about social media in the classroom due to the age of my students, but I can see how it can be very effective, especially in the older grades. This year I started using the Remind app for my classroom and it has been extremely useful for communication with parents. Another reason I am unsure of social media in the classroom is because other than a computer lab and SMART Board, I do not have other forms of technology available to use in my classroom so I do not have much experience with in this area. As mentioned earlier, I attended a technology conference this summer, but was disappointed that the majority of the presentations were geared toward older students. I am hoping that through this course I will be able to find more ways to use technology and social media with my younger students.

1 comment:

  1. I work with 4th-6th graders so I can easily imagine how social media might be used with them. For example, they use google classroom to interact with the teacher and their classmates and to turn in assignments when they are away from school. I do understand what you mean about the use of social media with younger students. I can see it being helpful with parents like you mentioned the Remind App. Maybe a class twitter page or blog can be kept private and used to send updates and class photos!