How do you become a change agent in the field of education? According to assistant principal and Daily Edventures alumnus William Blake, the answer is simple: social media.
Blake, who is currently working on his doctoral degree, is writing his research dissertation on “Teacher perspectives on social media and its implications on student engagement.” Blake notes the results of the High School Survey of Student Engagement (HSSSE), which states that 66 percent of students reported being bored at least every day in class, and one out of every six students (17 percent) reported that they were bored in every class everyday. “I believe in order to attack that boredom, we must engage our students with social media,” says Blake.
To Blake, social media holds great power for building engagement with students in meaningful learning because almost all students are familiar with it. “Not only is this phenomenon popular in society, it is transforming instructional practices of classroom teachers,” he notes. “Educators of the 21st century can no longer use traditional teaching methods such as chalkboard talk, lecture, and paper assessments as the primary practice to engage students in meaningful learning. This instructional shift forces educators to use innovative technologies, digital resources, and social media to engage students.”
Blake is especially enthusiastic about Edmodo, which uses the same interface as Facebook. He sees great success with Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for communicating not only with students, but also with parents and each school’s greater community.
Today, I’m pleased to share a video blog created by Blake on how social media can make a huge difference for educators and students the world over. What do you think? How have you used social media in your classroom? Does it help engage your students more deeply in their work?