Our friends at EdSurge put together some interesting thoughts this week on what constitutes “professional” or “personal” social media for students. EdSurge collected a great set of links and ideas on this topic.
NYC DoE tries to draw a line
The NYC Department of Ed recently published a set of social media guidelines seeking to delineate between social media used for professional and personal purposes. However, as EdSurge points out, this is a fuzzy distinction for students.
Critics of the NYC guidelines emphasize the importance of teachers to being familiar with the social networks that their students are using both in and out of the classroom. If teachers don’t interact with students on their own turf—mobile devices, Facebook, Xbox Live, or social games such as DrawSomething—they could be missing out on an important opportunity to engage their students.
Kodiak helps teachers and parents understand how children are using the iPad to learn, communicate, and entertain themselves. As the new generation of digital natives grows up with these devices, it will be increasingly important for educators to understand their activity and to interact with them through their favorite mediums.
Google Docs can be a fantastic tool for working digitally. The suite of products is comprehensive (word processor, presentation creator, spreadsheet program, and more), the collaboration features are top notch, and to made the deal even sweeter, it’s free.
However, Google Docs has its drawbacks. Teacher and blogger Vicki Davis discovered one recently—in a very frustrating way.
Google’s ToU prohibit personal data collection
Davis’s school lost information when Google deleted some data that had been collected using Google Forms. Google’s terms of service prohibit users from collecting personal information with Google Forms. “This includes a userid, password, AND emails,” writes Davis.
Google runs pieces of code on its servers that search for Google Docs that might be in violation of their terms of service. Problematic files are then deleted automatically.
Google Docs: Good, not perfect
Issues like this aren’t the only potential problem with using Google Docs in your school. You need an internet connection in order to use it, meaning your files won’t be available offline. And some people find that the programs, while simple to use, don’t have all of the features they want.
As we’ve mentioned before here on the Kodiak blog, privacy is a serious concern for us, as we know it is for you. Be careful out there when looking for ways to manage your students’ data.