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The Global Educator, by Julie Lindsay

Students and Teachers together - Why do we use the Ning?

Hello everyone and welcome to our Flat Classroom Ning and also to our Flat Classroom Project 2008.

If you are new to the project you may be wondering why we use the 'Ning'.
Vicki and I like to call this 'educational networking' rather than the term 'social networking'. We expect all students to learn how to behave and use the ning to interact, blog, discuss and share with others from the project.
The Ning is where we connect. It is where we blog and discuss things. This is the first thing to join. Also, last year's work is on the ning, so you may want to take a look at what we've done and you'll see how we reflected at various points. Also, it helps students talk about things w/out having to share emails.

Easy steps to join and use the Ning:
1. Join yourself as a teacher, create a profile and upload an icon/avatar to represent you
2. Send a message to Vicki or myself and we will make you an organiser on the Ning so you can monitor and watch out for your students and other classrooms as well (we share this 24/7).
3. Create a new Group for your classroom eg Qatar Academy 08
4. Ask your students to join the Ning and to join the Flat Classroom 2008 Group as well as your class group. These groups are very important tools for sharing and communicating with certain sub-groups of the Ning membership.
5. We encourage you and your students to introduce themselves via a blogpost and/or an audio file (use audacity, export as an MP3 file and upload to the music widget on the home page or on a personal page).
6. We also encourage you and your students to interact with others on the Ning by leaving comments to personal profiles or blog posts, starting forums, etc. There is also a chat widget for real-time interaction that some participants may be able to take advantage of.

Good luck everyone with this new project. Please let us know if you have any further questions about the Ning or if you see something inappropriate online that needs special attention.

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