This year I have decided to use Facebook as a means of communicating with students and parents outside of the classroom. Now, before you look at me with a shady eye, I am not communicating with students on a personal level, and I am not using my personal Facebook page. I would rather not get arrested or fired!
Instead, I have set up page that is my dedicated “educational” Facebook. This page is still set up with my name, but I don’t use the personal wall at all. I have set three pages, one for each level that I teach, under the homepage. These are the pages I will use to communicate with students and parents as to what is going on within the classroom. So far, I have used the page mostly to post assignments. When a student is absent, I can now tell them to go to the page and get the assignment.
This brings up another aspect of the Facebook page. I am not actually posting assignments directly to the Facebook page. First, assignments are posted on my class blog. These are then pushed to the Facebook page. This might seem redundant, but I know that more students will see the Facebook pages on their mobile devices. However, posts on the blog will be accessible for those who do no have a mobile device.
Right now, this experiment is in the beginning stages. I am surprised at how few students have “liked” the page so far. There are getting to be more and more but not as many as I w0uld have imagined. My biggest success so far is that a parent of a student who lives out of state has liked the page to keep track of what her students is doing in class. I never thought of the page being used in that manner!
I’ll keep you updated on how this all pans out in the future.