Supplement Your Professional Learning with edWeb
This post was written by Eric Sheninger. Eric Sheninger is the Senior Fellow and Thought Leader on Digital Leadership with the International Center for Leadership in Education. His work focuses on leading and learning in the digital age as a model for moving schools and districts forward. Eric has received numerous awards and acknowledgements for his work, including being chosen by TIME Magazine as one of the 140 Best Twitter Feeds in 2014. Earlier in his career, Eric was an award-winning principal at New Milford High School (NMHS), which became a globally recognized model for innovative practices under his leadership. Follow Eric on Twitter @E_Sheninger.
Since 2009 I have been a huge believer and advocate for connected learning and the formation of Personal Learning Networks (PLN’s). Now don’t get me wrong, I still highly value face-to-face experiences, as there are some natural limits to learning exclusively in a social media vacuum. The discussions, interpersonal connections, and relationships that result from these events are priceless. It is also extremely important for district and school teams to collaborate in person on specific goals. Doing this exclusively online, outside of the school day or year, can be quite a challenge if not impossible.
As digital technology continues to evolve, educators now have numerous options to connect, learn, and grow in both formal and informal ways. These pathways provide an incredible supplement to formal learning opportunities that are provided through district/school trainings as well as off-site conferences, workshops, and presentations. One of the most significant benefits of connected learning is the ability for educators to follow their specific passions to improve professionally. Motivated by an intrinsic desire to improve, connected learning and PLN’s provide personalization and differentiation like never before.
There are so many fantastic tools that educators can use today to connect, engage, and learn with colleagues from across the globe. One of my favorite tools is a digital discussion forum called edWeb. It is comprised of a community of over 100,000 educators from across the globe. Here is why edWeb should be a part of everyone’s PLN:
- Anyone can join for FREE!
- Ability to join specific communities aligned to professional learning needs and interests.Be sure to check out the Leadership 3.0 community that I facilitate.
- Watch and participate in live webinars aligned to professional learning communities that are of interest to you. There is also a calendar that provides information on all the webinars being offered by month.
- Practitioners who are actually doing the work as well as experts in the field of education conduct Webinars.
- All webinars are archived so that educators can watch and learn at times convenient to them no matter where they are in the world.
- Continuing Education (CE) certificates are provided at the conclusion of each webinar and are accepted by many schools, districts, and states.
- edWeb can be accessed on any mobile device.
A new feature that has been rolled out recently is edWeb TV. This paid subscription option provides educators access to over 800 on-demand webinars for a nominal fee. Each webinar has also been aligned to the national professional development standards.
edWeb has provided a supplement to my professional learning since it’s inception. Give it a try and I have no doubt that it will become one of your favorite connected learning tools as part of a vibrant PLN.
Eric is the host of the Leadership 3.0 community on edWeb.net. Leadership 3.0 is a free professional learning community where school and district leaders collaborate on innovative strategies to help teachers grow professionally, advance student learning, and improve communications with all stakeholders. Leadership 3.0 is for any educator who takes a leadership role in improving K-12 teaching, learning, school culture, and performance.