How Teachers Collaborate with Students Using Facebook Groups


How Teachers Collaborate with Students Using Facebook Groups

"Facebook" is a revolution in the world of social networking. Anyone who knows some basics of web, will surely be a Facebook user. Most of the people around the globe find Facebook very useful to share their status updates, visits, photos, videos, 

life events, etc. with their friends and followers.

This is the best platform to get instant information about almost anyone and anything and to socialize with people. Groups, pages, apps and games are some of the additional features offered by Facebook to create user engagement. Many people feel that Facebook is just a social networking platform for entertainment, but if you go beyond that, you’ll get to know how useful it is to improve your knowledge, interaction and socialization skills. ‘Facebook for Education’; there has been a heated discussion going on this topic for some time now. Some agree with it while many others disfavor it.  Just as a coin has two different sides, anything in this world has two types of outcomes; positive and negative. The way we use it is what actually matters. Let’s concentrate on some positive aspects of ‘Facebook in Education’.

Instant information: If you want information on anything, just ask the crowd on Facebook for it. If it is a trending topic, you’ll get instant information from search results in addition to what people are talking about.

Involve students, teachers and educators: The motto behind creating Facebook is to provide  a platform for classmates, colleagues, family members and friends to know more about and interact with each other. So, teachers can also use Facebook to collaborate with students and their parents with ease.

Events: The events feature of Facebook can be used by administrators to keep students & teachers up to date by creating events which work like reminders.

Explore Questions: Facebook allows anyone to post questions such as MCQs. Teachers can conduct online quizzes, polls,  etc.

Stay in touch with old students:  Teachers can guide their students even after they finish their schooling and students are also able to stay in touch with their seniors and get help with their studies.

Including the above benefits, there are many more positive aspects of Facebook. One of the significant aspects of using Facebook in Education is the ability to create “Groups”. Facebook allows anyone to create free groups for their class, school, college, organization, favorite subject, etc. There are a large number of groups on Facebook which relate to a particular place, class, cause, school, area of interest and more. People need not be friends to collaborate in groups. In this article, we let you know how teachers can use one of the most powerful offering by Facebook – ‘Facebook Groups’ to collaborate with their students.

Ask for Feedbacks:
If you want to introduce a new assignment or a new activity to your classroom, it’s better to have your students' opinions on it.  Getting feedbacks from your students will be very easy if you’ve all of them present in your class’s Facebook group.

To encourage online participation:

Get shy or inactive students out of their shells to participate in discussions. There’s an option to mention any particular group member on Facebook. 

Take Polls:

Give students priority to participate in classroom activities. Facebook allows you to create polls or quizzes through groups: ask group members a question, add some options and see the votes on them.

Publish Time Table:
You can pin any of your posts to keep it visible on the top of group posts. You can publish time tables, home works, syllabus to cover in a fixed time format, events or questions and pin them for students to find whenever they need.

Provide best resources by adding multimedia:

Facebook allows group members to post articles, links, images & videos for document creation and collaboration. Ask your students to curate content, you can also provide them with your best resources on any topic or lesson.

Publish students’ achievements:

If a student gets a top rank, admire and encourage him by posting his result publicly. The rest of the public can also congratulate him through comments. Similarly, mention the group of students who have topped a quiz or who have completed a classroom project successfully.

Conduct Discussions:

Post a topic and ask students to have a discussion on it. It’s better if you initiate it by mentioning some active members and appreciate students’ opinions by liking their comments.

Exam practice:

Postexam practice activities and help your students prepare better for upcoming exams.

Review your students’ posts:

Give students instant feedbacks either formally or informally on their work and progress. Facebook allows group administrators (admins) to approve a group member’s post before making it visible to all members. You can use this privacy option, if you feel the need of it.

Privacy:

Your students do not need to be friends with you or each other on Facebook to interact in a group, just ask them to apply to join your Facebook group. 

This is how teachers can collaborate with their students effectively through Facebook groups. Besides the above mentioned points, there would surely be more ways to use a Facebook group for education.

We’d like to know more such ways of using ‘Facebook Groups in Education’. Please share your views and best practices with us.

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About the Author
Author: Santosh Bhaskar KWebsite: http://www.twitter.com/SantoshBhaskarK
Devotee of Dr. Abdul Kalam. Following his path of Creating Creative Education in India. Contributing my works in "India Vision 2020". Former EdTech Blogger/Researcher at ETR India

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