Social networking encompasses a wide range of tools and platforms for interaction in a diverse and ever changing digital environment. It is increasingly interconnected so that information can be viewed and shared across platforms.
Social networking sites I currently use include Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, Instagram and Youtube. I use these sites both personally and professionally. Educationally, I am interested in the transformative nature of social media; how content potentially changes as it is shared, discussed and interpreted.
I believe that social media plays such an integral role in society that we need to be aware of the potential of these sites for childrens’ learning. In the library I predominately use Twitter. It serves so many purposes including promoting and sharing what we are doing in the library and connecting with the children, wider community and the world!
It is important to bear in mind, that just as adults and children can be responsive to a variety of learning styles, the same can be said for social networking sites. For example visual learners might find Pinterest the most functional tool for gathering their thoughts and ideas whereas an auditory learner might respond better to information shared through the medium of video on Youtube.
Accessibility to different platforms provides opportunities for sharing, connecting and learning that may otherwise not occur. However, while exposure to these communication tools is important, I think it is vital to think logically and rationally about the purpose and intended outcomes for using a particular social networking site. In this subject I am looking forward to developing my understanding on how best to utilise these networks from an educational perspective to best meet the needs of the educational community.