Wednesday, April 8, 2009

How has your Professional Learning Network Changed you?

Recently I asked the question on Twitter: How would you describe your life before you had a PLN? I remember when I felt alone in my classroom. What do you remember?

32 people in my network responded (Thanks!). I collected the results into two Wordles (scroll down to see the original responses). I see a theme of isolation before and connection now.

What do you see?

The original responses:

mwackermwacker@lizbdavis Before PLN...connections and collaboration slow moving and less productive
Susan Carter Morganscmorgan@lizbdavis My life before PLN? Not as rich. More structured in class. Not as much fun!
Keisa Williamsmonarchlibrary@lizbdavis Before I my PLN, I never imagined that my K-5 students could have a global audience & the impact it would have on their work.
classroomqueenclassroomqueen@lizbdavis Not sure how I operated w/o colleagues around the globe. Now I have people to vent to, ask questions & receive help from.
Dennis Armsarmsd@lizbdavis I feel validated by my PLN, I love having other people with the same makes me feel good
Karen Chichesterkchichester@lizbdavis Before my PLN I was alone and burned out. I lacked the enthusiasm needed to teach. My PLN has reinvigorated my teaching.
Chuck Hollandchuckholland@lizbdavis My life pre-PLN Isolated.
Bud TalbotBud_T@lizbdavis before twitter, my learning experiences were more one dimensional
Scott Meechsmeech@lizbdavis ... before PLN ... sounds like before AD ... I think unique in many ways and that I am not very unique in my thinking after all.
mkm420fritzmkm420fritz@lizbdavis stay at home mom and college professor at night - don't know how i learned anything before- learn tons from my PLN everyday!
Carey Pohankacapohanka@lizbdavis I remember always feeling like there was more out there going on and I was missing out. Just didn't know what it was.
Francie digiduchess@lizbdavis You asked how we felt before PLN and I would have to say like an outsider,out of step, lost & alone. Surprised the difference.
cehyde9cehyde9@lizbdavis CRAZY...I was just thinking about how many unbelievable resources and information I get from my PLN! Amazing!
Chris Webbcwebbtech@lizbdavis Life before my Twitter PLN was cold and lonely. I often felt behind the times. Now I feel challenged and empowered! :-)
Valerievbek@lizbdavis support, information + get from good to great 'cause forced to make meaning with other people
Nelly Cardinalenycrican2RT: @lizbdavis: How would you describe your life before you had a PLN? I remember when I felt alone in my classroom. What do you remember?
✜ Stephen Ransomransomtech@lizbdavis I'm going to share that with my students who R struggling with the need 4 a PLN
MagistraMMagistraM@lizbdavis As a Latin teacher, it is unusual to have even one colleague in a district. My PLN connects me with others globally
MagistraMMagistraM@lizbdavis pre-PLN was isolating. Couldn't get feedback and ideas to expand my plans - or for my own learning.
jtroutnerjtroutner@lizbdavis-Lonely, my point of view only--now I can look at things from such a wide range of POVs Great growth tool!
msstewartmsstewart@lizbdavis I remember getting stuff done ;) altho I'd never go back
Jen Wagnerjenwagner@lizbdavis I remember the feeling of "am I weird", I was seen as a fanatic & geekie. But I have always marched to my own drummer
Kathy Risolvokrisolvo@lizbdavis before PLN, I didn't feel as connected to the future. I felt like I was always catching on a little late.
Julie Lindsayjulielindsay@lizbdavis B-PLN I made decisions in isolation based on limited knowledge of the world, now I have support and informed advisors globally
Heidi Van Riperhlvanrip@lizbdavis felt stagnant and helpless! I wasn't sure how to learn what I knew I needed to. Now it is always right there. Now always growing!
Bill Graziadei, PhDwgraziadei@lizbdavis can't ever imagine being alone in classroom but it does get better like a good bottle of wine aging :-)
Lee-Anne Pattersonlpatterson@lizbdavis feeling lost and wondering who to ask. Have always taught in isolated places so PLN tools like twitter make it for me
Bill CampbellBillCamp@lizbdavis pre-PLN: Often only aware of issues I should be thinking about the few rare times I attended conf/mtg not at my school.
Karen JanowskiKarenJan@lizbdavis I remember when I had more time....
Nelly Cardinalenycrican2@lizbdavis Before Twitter, I looked at every day as just another teaching day for me, now I look at every day as a new learning opportunity.
Mikefisher1000@lizbdavis It's like thinking of life before our daughter...can't really remember what it was like. Or what I used to do with my free time!
Lisa Thumannlthumann@lizbdavis Isolating and pretty much time starting everything from a blank white slate
Jason Ramsdenraventech@lizbdavis Before my PLN....I did not know as many people or learn as much as I can today. Shoot. I was a mere shadow of my current self.


johnfaig said...

My PLN (including Twitter & other services) has been a watershed event in my edtech career. It has enabled me to learn new technologies and create classroom project at a very rapid pace. I tend to check Twitter whenever I have a few minutes. I use it in conjunction with other sources of ideas, such as Delicious/Diigo and several Nings. Be warned: PLNs may be hazardous to your sleep cycle. I find myself interacting with my PLN very often. I need to take a deep breathe and remember that I have responsibilities to my students and teachers. I liken it to a basketball coach being addicted to ESPN Classic channel. There is a huge amount of basketball to watch. It will likely improve his coaching, but he must remember that his players can only digest so much. Bottom Line: I am going to continue to butn the midnight oil keeping up with my PLN, but I am going to make a conscious effort to devote significant time to actually using what I find

John Faig

Lisa Thumann said...

Great use of Wordle Liz, and even better with the use of black white vs. color.

Thanks for sharing the responses. I remember when you asked the question as I think of what it was like quite often. It was interesting to read other responses.

Anonymous said...

I am currently going to school to become a special education teacher, and after looking through several different blogs, I have come acrossed PLN on several different occassions. I was wondering what this exactly was and how it would benefit me as a teacher