Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Building Your Google+ Professional Learning Network

Google+ has proven to be a powerful tool in sharing and finding educational resources. It has taken a couple of years to take off, but now that it is I absolutely love it. It is another social media avenue, like Twitter and Facebook, for educators to get new and fresh ideas. The inspiration I get from the people in my circles and the communities I am a part of is priceless. 

Building your Google+ Professional Learning Network (PLN) is quite easy. On Twitter you follow people and on Google+ you add people to a circle. A circle is simply a way to organize people. For instance, I have the following circles: Educator, Google Educator, LISD (my district), and EDU Companies. This allows me to post to or view posts from certain circles. You can have as many or few circles as you would like and you can add people to multiple circles. 

There are so many great educators using Google+, so I couldn't possibly list them all, but here are a couple I recommend: Kasey Bell, Brandie Cain-Heard, Sue Gorman, Molly Schroeder, and Jim Sill. Oh and myself of course ;-). 

To build your PLN, I recommend going to see who the people you add have added in their circles. Check out people's posts prior to adding them. If what they post doesn't interest you then don't add them because their posts will appear in your stream. 


Once you build your PLN it is time to start sharing the ideas and resources you create or come across. If you are new to Google+ here is Google+ Overview Cheat Sheet and a Creating a Google+ Post Cheat SheetBasic posting is pretty self explanatory, but there are some pretty cool features that I want to make sure you don't miss out on. 



Google+ Overview Cheat Sheet


Creating a Google+ Post

When you create a new post, Google+ looks at the wording and gives you some suggested hashtags. You can choose to keep the suggestions or add your own hashtags. Just like in Twitter, those hashtags make it easy to find posts and resources on a specific topic. Search a particular hashtag in the 'Search for people, pages, or posts' field. 


I can't wait to have you as part of my Google+ Professional Learning Network.



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