I’m working on the teen edition of the Parent Tool Kit and one area that is included is a section about using the latest technologies to connect parents to the classroom and I keep wondering how successful it will be in engaging all parents.
Last night @shannoninottawa and @dougpete put out a tweet asking Ontario Bloggers to write a blog post about using Social Media(SM) in Ontario classrooms as a response to a blog post written by Chris Kennedy re: BC taking the lead in using SM in education.
I was thrilled to see the immediate response that certainly proves Chris Kennedy wrong ( don’t have data yet) but based on the criteria used by Chris in his blog post Ontario educators are sure in the running. I’ll leave it to Shannon and Doug to tweet out their blog post when it is ready.
The conversation we were having made me think about how SM is used with parents and ask the question “do we have @Joe_Mazza in Ontario?” I’ll explain what I mean. Joe is a principal in Philadelphia who is using social media such as twitter, blogs and YouTube to engage parents in his school. Shannon typed our her own quick blog post about how she connects with parents with good tutorials on how to get started. Yup – Youtube, classroom blogs and twitter!! Parents are thrilled with her work and I love that she is getting such positive feedback. Shannon is doing a wonderful job leading the way in sending out information to parents using SM.
I have whole bunch of questions about the success of using these tools beyond sharing information with parents.
Are teachers using SM to ask parents what they think? Is it being used to seek advice from parents? Are we using Facebook and twitter to maintain two-way communications? Are we providing training for parents on how to respond and engage using these tools? Is it the already engaged parents who are engaging now using SM? How many parents are connected with smart phones, computers the Internet? Is there any data to support how many parents know how to use these tools. I want to hear overwhelming that SM is being used successfully to engage parents but in general I don’t think it is. I need to be bang on in writing about tools for parents of teens so can you share your thoughts on how best to do it?
A bit more about Joe. If you watch/listen to Joe Mazza’s presentation on Parents as Partners you will hear how he uses ustream to broadcast the home and school meetings; how he uses the back channel to keep the conversations in the room and at home together and how he used poll everywhere to obtain parents opinions on the topics being discussed at the meeting while they are at home.
If you want to meet up with Joe and hear first hand what he does. please join us on Classroom 2.0 LIVE this saturday January 21, 2012. Find out how to participate here.