Friday, April 1, 2011

How to use FB without getting sucked into FB

I'm still enjoying the web presence created by and for my class, with students having easy access to handouts, posting the results of group work done in class, etc. My third informal writing assignment didn't go over as well as the first two -- about 2/3 of the class answered it while the whole class managed the first two -- but I think that has more to do with my prompt, which wasn't very clear, than the technology.

This week, a student did raise a possible issue with using FB for class: as she was working on her essay, she popped over to FB to get one of the handouts and look something up about the assignment. An hour later, she had checked all her status updates, chatted with some "friends," and managed to get sucked into the time-wasting non-academic world of FB. Her comment prompted a class discussion about why I'm doing this whole web thing and why I chose FB in particular. Most of my students agreed that the FB page is easy to find and navigate because they're so familiar with the platform but I can see why it may be counter-productive to send students to FB to get work done. We agreed on some strategies (get all the info you need before starting to write, setting up a work or school-related FB page that won't be as distracting) and will revisit the topic going forward -- it's definitely something that I will continue to explore.

1 comment:

  1. I was wondering about that. I don;t use FB for class or class work (only for Q&A and online office time) so I can effectively "ban it" during in-class assignments. Using Net-op you can also block individual programs and etc., by the way. BUT I have in the past had some really interesting conversations with classes about the time-suck of multi-tasking which X and I have worked into our prep (thanks to her) with readings such as "How to Do One Thing at a Time". I think if we are proactive about how much online work IS NOT like regular class, nor should be, we have the potential for some really interesting discussions with our "digital natives".