I recently watched a video by Dean Shareski all about educators and sharing. Dean strongly believes that it is absolutely necessary for educators to be sharing with each other as a means to share resources to save time and a way to learn from one another. He states that it is our ethical responsibility as teachers to be sharing. Sharing ideas is an excellent form of teaching and learning, and we routinely ask our students to share with each other, so we as teachers need to be sharing as well. Especially when sharing is a way to share resources and ideas to save us time!
Dean commented that the easiest step into sharing is via social bookmarking by using sites such as Diigo. Personally, this was my first step into educational sharing, and it certainly is an easy and beneficial first step. Not only do social bookmarking sites allow you to keep track of resourceful websites, but you can share these websites with others and find valuable websites from other’s bookmarks. More recently I have signed up on Twitter. To begin with I certainly did not understand all the benefits that could be experienced from using Twitter. It has certainly proved to be an effective way to connect with other educators (from around the world) and to share resources with each other.
Blogging is another effective means for both teachers and students to share (and another activity that I was unaware of how valuable it could be!). It is mentioned in the video that blogging is a cheap and risk-free way to invest in your own career. Blogging can be used as a reflective tool, a way to connect with other educators, a way for you to share ideas and resources and get feedback on, and an excellent way to introduce students to online sharing and learning.
Dean strongly promotes the culture of sharing in the video, and it is easy to see why. Both we and our students, as well as our schools, can experience direct benefits from us sharing online. Sharing also needs to happen with the teacher’s right in our schools and divisions, and does not necessarily need to be online in these cases, but online sharing is the most effective form of sharing in a global sense and allows you to connect with the best educators around the globe. The question really is why isn’t every teacher sharing as much as they can?