Improving my PLN

The term “Personal Learning Network” may be new to me, but the general concept of it and how to improve it are somewhat familiar! Some of us discovered after day 1 of making our (purposeful) PLN that we already had one (perhaps small and weak) already started.  Thanks to “How to cultivate a personal learning network,” I am learning how to make my baby PLN grow stronger and more helpful to me! 

  1. Exploring and being open.  I have to listen to this point! I’m very closed off on my social media. Maybe it’s all the “creeper training” I’ve had, but I don’t venture outside of my comfort zone of friends.  That has changed this week! I had to follow 100 new sources on Twitter! This simple action has already changed my Twitter outlook immensely! I was following about 10 people (my students) and being followed by those same 10 people.  My feed was rather boring and uninformative..unless I was wondering who was going shopping or if someone broke up!  Now my feed changes every second and I have all sorts of resources at my fingertips! Venturing out has already been beneficial!
  2. Search tools- This point will take more work on my part.  To be honest, I’ve never even heard of the three different tools he mentioned! More homework for me!
  3. Resubscribe? This point is also a good one.  Now that I have 100+ things I’m following, I need to check on their value for myself.  Is this person adding things that matter to me? Or are they full of a lot of “fluff”?  Unfortunately, some of the people I want to unfollow are my students.  However, I feel that I need to keep them.  Suggestions for this?
  4. Point Four goes right along with point 3 to me.  Weed out people/feeds that don’t interest you or give you accurate information. Then I need to make sure to add someone new in to make sure my PLN keeps growing instead of shrinking! (I do this plenty on Pinterest, so hopefully it isn’t that hard on Twitter!) His 900 people he is following is quite an impressive number! I may aim for 200 by the end of the summer!
  5. Feed others.  I need to keep this in mind when I tweet and blog.  People are following me, so I need to make sure to retweet or share blogs with them that I think they would enjoy.  It’s not all about me! (Also a great life lesson!)
  6. Engage.  This is a requirement of this course, and I see why.  Even though we are online, we still need to be polite and engage in dialogue just like we would in real life.  This is also something that we could show our students as our personal examples of digital citizenship when teaching them how to behave online!
  7. This goes with 6 to me, making sure to ask and answer questions well.  This is something I need to work on.  I’m horrible at thinking of meaningful questions to ask so I usually just compliment them and say “good job!”  I really need to work more on this so I can show my students how to do it!
  8. Respond.  Here’s another requirement of this class! (Well done, teacher!)  This is one area I think I already do a good job with.  I always try to respond to all messages (email, Facebook, blog, and Twitter) the moment I see it! 

This article is full of good information that I need to keep in mind throughout the rest of this course, as well as my digital life! Hopefully it is helpful for you as well! 

6 thoughts on “Improving my PLN

  1. As for un following your students, I believe there is an option to mute them. You will still be a follower, but then you can catch up on them when you want and not have your feed filled with fluff.


  2. I love what you said about getting out of your comfort zone and following new people. This can be difficult because the Twitter world is also new to me and I don’t want to follow the wrong people. But even if I follow someone who isn’t exactly what I want or need in my PLN, at least I can tweek my PLN, unfollow them, and go in a different direction.


  3. I am glad you mentioned that he follows 900 people because that blew me out of the water, and the only time I would have a number like that is when I am pinning on Pinterest. even on my Facebook I only have about 100-200 people, so this PLN is a BIG step for me to add 100+ to my twitter. I am excited and open to it!


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