The 12 Days of Technology-Day 12: Facebook, Pandora, & Fun!

On the 12th day of technology, my PLN gave to me:  Fun!  Now, that’s not to say that the other 11 days weren’t fun.  They were, but they were also challenging and at times frustrating as I struggled to get all of my students and computers working together at the same time, at the same pace, and at the same level of proficiency, a little like trying to get all three of my toddlers to nap at the same time, or to get all of us through a sitting for a family portrait without any tears or black eyes. But, no,the 12th day of technology was/is for me!

The first of my “fun” sites is Facebook.  For a long time, I didn’t want anything to do with Facebook. I’d figured I’d already had three e-mail accounts to obsess over 3, 4, (or ten) times daily which was more than enough.  The other issues was that Facebook, originally developed for college students (Harvard, to start with) made me feel like I was treading on my teenage kids’ private property.  But, then when I sent my daughter an e-mail and she didn’t open it, she told me that she rarely looked at her e-mail anymore because she did everything through Facebook.  OK.  There she had me.  I realized then that something bigger was involved in Facebook than just a site the media had conditioned me to believe existed solely for the purpose of giving pedophiles a venue for stalking innocent daughters and sons like mine.  (Yes, I was a guilt-ridden working mother who loved her job but worried constantly about her inadequacies as a mother.)

Anyway, Facebook turned out to be what is was designed to be and more, a means of connecting and staying connected with friends and family, for sharing information, pictures, events, and for networking with individuals and groups both personally and professionally.  Facebook turned out to be perfect for me!

Is Facebook perfect because I use Facebook for all those reasons?  Actually, yes!   I’ve reconnected with friends and family across the globe that I haven’t seen for more years than I care to acknowledge.   I’ve had a ball learning about their families and jobs and moves and high points and even low points, and I’m really happy to be in touch with the people I love regardless of distance easily, unintrusively and 24-7 at the touch of a keyboard!

Of course, there are good reasons to use Facebook with your students (Facebook for Educators, A Teacher’s Guide to Facebook), and there is netiquette that you should be aware of when using social media (Etiquette for the Social Networking Age).  But, I prefer to keep Facebook for me. You can keep it for yourself without feeling guilty.  Think about starting a Ning site to use with your students like I did. (Coffee Break!)  But, go ahead and get yourself started on Facebook.   Take a look at the How to Use Facebook: Video Series.  You’ll love Facebook!

Now, while you’re chatting with your friends on Facebook, catching up on their latest romances, or sharing pictures of your recent cruise,  play some online music!  I like Pandora because it chooses music based on my selections/tastes/moods.  I pick a group or song, and Pandora chooses something similar that it thinks I’ll enjoy. If I like it, I give it a thumbs up and they’ll play it again for me; if not, I give it a thumbs down and that’s the end of it.  For a minimal amount of work, I get a maximum amount of enjoyment!  When I’m stressed at work, and it seems like I just can’t eliminate all the noise, I put on the Pandora classical guitar station I’ve created.  It helps me focus and calms my nerves. Deadlines?  Who cares? Later I might put on a Latin station, or maybe classical rock (yeah, I know my age is showing!)  Whatever I want, I can find it on Pandora.

Other online music stations that I’d recommend for you to check out are Blip.fm and Lastfm.  They, like Pandora, are social in the sense that you share your music with followers, and you can follow someone else’s music.  Maybe you feel like watching some music videos.  Whatever music you’re up for, you’ll find it on one of these online stations.

So, my twelve days of technology:

1. Twitter; 2. Blogs; 3. YouTube; 4. Del.icio.us and Social Bookmarking; 5. Google; 6. Wallwisher; 7.  Jing; 8. Wordle; 9. VoiceThread; 10. SlideShare; 11. Glogster; 12.  Facebook and Pandora

I’m grateful to my PLN for bringing me all these gifts, and I hope that through these 12 Days of Technology articles, you, too, will find a gift to share.  Peace and happiness to all of you!

One Response

  1. Hello, I visited your website while searching bing for coffee. Your blog is really amazing and I like the theme. Just thought would let you know that I have subscribed to your rss feed. Also on a couple of pages I also encountered a 404 not found and after refreshing a couple of times was able to view the pages. Thank you

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