Social Networking Policy

At first, I assumed social networking was for entertainment purposes only. I used various sites like Facebook and Instagram to connect with family and friends on a personal level. However, after being exposed to a number of other sites I have created some guidelines on how I handle each.

Facebook: This site will be used to connect to friends and family on a strictly personal level. I have not opened up Facebook to my professional life. For example, there are various Facebook pages that are my District’s page or my school’s page. I will not be friends with them because I would rather not become friends with the parents or even students that are also friends with my district. I would rather not follow those types of pages on Facebook.

Twitter: I joined Twitter a couple of years ago to keep in touch with friends. Over the years, my friends lost interest and I found the use of Twitter start to help my professional environment. I follow science pages, news pages and other professional organizations. Twitter is starting to turn into  my professional social media site.

Google+: I strictly use Google + for a professional learning environment. I connect to my education and my peers in my class. I do not use this site for personal use.

Pinterest: At first, I was exposed to Pinterest in an entertainment personal use only environment. However, I am beginning to see the potential that Pinterest has in a professional setting. I am very impressed with all of the boards that relate to social networking. I will find these boards useful in the future when I have time to go through all of the pins.

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Week 6: Revamping Me

       After looking at a variety of About Me pages, I decided to create a background that deals with my passion. At first, I just thought this was a site geared towards work based ideas but then saw others include pictures of their interests. Many about me pages included the individual’s picture. I am still unsure about posting my actual picture so I uploaded a new picture. I went from having a plain black background to a background of the beach. I also had a plain microscope image that resembled a science teacher. With my about me page face lift, I wanted to include an image that I actually took. I changed the font and made my name stand out a little more. My professional brand stands out with the personal image that I took of the beach. It brings out my personal interests but also gives a brief update of 7th grade science.

The below picture shows the “before” and “after” of my About Me page. I really am glad I was able to revamp this site as an assignment. I like my new page because I turned it a little more personal.  My new About Me page is the one with the beach.


Above images were screen shots from by before and after About Me page. http://about.me/craigkaitlin

After asking a classmate Stacey for advice, I received the following suggestion. “I think your About Me Page looks great. I really like the font that you selected for your name. It draws my attention right away. The background that you selected went right along with your idea about studying with Hawaii. I’m not sure if we have to give something for you to change, but the only suggestion I would have is to maybe include what your plans are with your new degree, and maybe delete the bottom part “Welcome to 7th Grade science! I am looking….” This makes it seem like your audience is only your students.”

I decided to make use of my Twitter account and see if any classmates would like to check out my about me page.  I also got the opinion of a graphic designer. He had made suggestions to my about me page that I never knew people would look for. He suggested to get rid of “widows” which were the words that fell on a line by themselves. In addition the rag did not have a natural flow. I learned that the rag was how each line ended whether it be a shorter word or a longer word on the end of the line. Graphic designers look for the appeal of the text on each line which I just learned about from him.

As for my blog, I really am content with the design so far. I like the bright colors and the current theme. I just would try to limit the content on the blog as per discussed in class. Most people like to read shorter blogs that are to the point. I feel some of my posts might be on the longer side which might be unappealing to students to read through.

One site that provided helpful tips was http://www.onextrapixel.com/2010/09/06/how-to-write-an-effective-about-me-page/. This site suggested that a picture is put on the about me page because it adds a personal touch to the site. It also creates a list of what to place on the About Me page.

  1. Name and profession
  2. Specialty, niche, or area of focus
  3. Experience – list number of years experience, any high-end clients, or if worked for a well-known company
  4. Useful personality traits – pays attention to detail, thinker, entrepreneurial mindset, perfectionist
  5. Publications, interviews, or other recognitions in the design community
  6. Education and work experience
  7. Location, age, general family life



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Week 5: What makes social networking sites trustworthy?


I decided to use Popular Science Magazine. This magazine has apps, rss feeds and social media sites that allow users to connect to their magazine. I came across a Twitter and a Facebook page for the Popular Science Magazine so I decided to see who was checking them out. I found the five accounts by looking at each Tweet and seeing who retweeted it. Some regular folks retweeted this along with some professional Twitter accounts. I decided to look into a variety of people that retweeted this.

             I decided that there are many ideas that make those accounts trustworthy. Some examples were the number of followers they had, the number of tweets they made and the number of people they follow. I wanted to chose accounts that had a variety of followers and tweets. In addition, I also was able to see if their Twitter page was linked back to a website. I believe a Twitter page that is linked back to a website is also a sign of trustworthiness. The website validates that these people are legitimate. In addition, the number of retweets from other professional sites this account makes gave reason to believe that they are trustworthy. I would rather read those accounts that had professional tweets rather than those accounts that tweeted about their day. To me, when people just tweet about their day, it gives me an untrustworthy appeal to their page. If they are constantly putting up news articles, finding resources and sharing them out makes them trustworthy in my opinion. I also leaned towards the educational accounts when choosing who else to follow. I liked to hear other teachers discuss the Popular Magazine. I clicked on the educational accounts to hopefully get tips on how others use the magazine. Unfortunately, I did not come across tips for teachers on their Twitter pages. Rather, I saw the educational accounts retweet those Tweets of Popular Science. I did not decide to follow any of the accounts I clicked on. I personally, like to follow people I know rather than connect with strangers. It’s just a personal preference and I know my networking will not get any larger. However, I rarely am on Twitter so to follow random other accounts would not benefit me. If I were more active on Twitter I would consider following those others and establishing connections with them. However, at this time, I do not wish to follow random Twitter accounts. The following accounts were the Twitter accounts that were associated with the Popular Science Magazine.

1. @Flutterings_org Flutterings is a not-for-profit collaboration of education reformers. Tweets from Steve, a Flutterings director and 7th grade science teacher. Gilbert, Arizona · http://flutterings.org  Some trustworthy factors that I found about Flutterings were: retweets from educational magazines, rarely has personal tweets related to personal business. 446 followers, 257 tweets and 870 following,

2.   FHSBiology ‏ @FHSBiology1 The Biology Department of Farlingaye High School. Follow us for Biology related re-tweets, department news revision tips and competitions! Some of the trustworthy aspects of this account: Retweets from Society of Biology, New Scientist and other professional organizations. The high school is trustworthy in my opinion just because it is a school. 48 Tweets  23 Following  8 Followers

3. Thayer Helu @LordThayer  Acting lord and regional wizard of Trussville. Birmingham, AL · http://lordthayer.tumblr.com, This account seemed untrustworthy for the following reasons: personal posts, inappropriate ones at some points, and no website to describe them further. This account actually described themselves as a wizard? Just the easy going and juvenile approach did not give a trustworthy vote in my opinion. 3,262 Tweets  252 Following  256 Followers


4. Audrey Struwe @astruwe  Fabric and home accessories store owner. I have three Etsy shops, AudreysStash.etsy.com and AudreysHandMade.etsy.com and AudreysFabricAndTrim.etsy.com   This account seemed to be trustworthy because of the number of tweets, and followers they have. This account is from a small business owner in Texas. The points that made this trustworthy was the fact that they retweeted other educational websites or resources for the public In addition, this account linked the public back to a personal website.. 23,133 Tweets  1,471 Following  1,441 Followers  http://www.audreysfabric.com

5. The American Scholar  @TheAmScho A quarterly journal of literature, science and culture published for a general readership since 1932.Washington, DC · http://www.theamericanscholar.org  Some aspects of trustworthiness on this site: the Atlantic and the Uncreative Writer organizations follow this site along with other professionals. Also, they have posted many resources for the public along with their website. 1,570 Tweets 385 Following  2,825 Followers

            In research I conducted on “What makes Twitter accounts trustworthy?” I found certain ideas that I personally thought made a site trustworthy but the article says differently. For example, ” These were the lowest five credibility lowering factors for tweets…
1. Weak grammar and/or punctuation 2.71
2. Profile picture equals Twitter’s default user image – 2.87
3. User image is a cartoon/avatar – 3.22
4. Author follows many users – 3.30
5. Author’s user image is a logo – 3.37 ” I never honestly thought of all of those lowering credibility to Tweets.  The above data was taken from; http://www.thestrategyweb.com/study-what-makes-twitter-users-trustworthy. Good thing I did research. In addition, this following picture grabbed my attention because 42% of the population did not trust or distrust any brand or company on Twitter. I just went and trusted all of the company’s and brands on Twitter. I will be re-evaluating how I see accounts on Twitter. The following image was taken from: http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1007863Image


Week 4: Organizing social media

On your blog, reflect on how the different tools you have explored this week could be useful to you. As a second part to your blog post, answers the following question: What are the difference between aggregating and curating?

             After looking back at the new tools that I tried this week, I can find some positives and some negatives about my experiences with each tool. Overall, I believe these resources will become easier to use once I really dig into them throughout this semester. The sites that were shared this week all offered ways to organize social media content. At first, I never knew such a thing existed. I honestly, never knew of ways to organize social media. Currently, I just check every social media site that I need to in a given time frame. Yes, I block off time. By currently having a lifestyle that just naturally checks the sites daily, I am hesitant about sites that manage information flow at this point in time.

                The first site that I tried out was Google Reader. At first, I wasn’t sure how to begin but once I started clicking around, I began to like this opportunity. I found this option particularly helpful when participating in class through my classmate’s blogs. I found it very easy to comment on my classmates blogs because I found the information all in a central location. I think I will like using this option throughout the semester because of the accessibility of it.

                The next option that I found and signed up for was ifttt.com. I am still a little hesitant while maneuvering through this site. I was not sure of the “exact recipe” to create so I created a recipe that uses the if then statement, “If I update my WordPress then I will have a Tweet share out my post”. I will have to check back on this site to see if I set my recipe correct. I also set the tag to #UDSNF12. I can tell I will need to really use this site to understand it.

                In addition, I signed up for Hootsuite. Again, this is a site that I am not confident in interacting with just yet. I created two streams of ideas, a Twitter stream and a WordPress stream. I really like how there are different tabs for each main idea that I set up. I am still in the process of figuring out if I can follow my classmates blogs while using this site. I do not think I would like to add my personal sites to Hootsuite just yet. I want more practice with this before I go ahead and add Facebook for example. I also want to try out scheduling updates via this site. That concept just seems interesting to me.

                Netvibes.com is the last new site that I signed up for. This site seemed the most confusing to me. I am unsure of the big idea behind this site other than to follow hashtags. I am currently following our hashtag of #UDSNF12 on this website and that is all that I figured out how to do. If anyone has any tips on using this site please share…  

                After looking through various sources I was able to figure out what curation and arrgregation meant. According to http://socialmediamagic.com/blog/difference-aggregating-curating-twitter/, “aggregation is content creation, and curation is content sourcing and sharing.” I can assume that aggregation means posting your own ideas while curation is finding other sources then sharing them out. I also read Shatzkin Files and came across the following idea; ” Aggregation, of course, simply means pulling together things which are not necessarily connected.” Visit the following site, to see the whole story. http://www.idealog.com/blog/aggregation-and-curation-two-concepts-that-explain-a-lot-about-digital-change/. For example, curation means that a person gets to choose which information they present while aggregation is the collection of ideas related to a topic.

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Week 3: Pitfalls and opportunities of the Web

Week 3:

After looking at the various blogs and short videos, I was introduced to dangers and opportunities of the web as well as ways to manage information overload.  Many of the blogs and videos introduced opened my eyes to various viewpoints. Stephen Mangat introduced a variety of sites that I would like to take advantage of in order to prevent information overload. I really liked his idea of Hoot Suite because it blocked out time to set up future social media posts. I never heard of anything like this so I view this as an advantage of social media. I also liked his suggestion of using Pigeon. With this site, I can integrate many chats at once. I would be curious to see how this could possibly be used in our classroom. Seeing Pigeon as an opportunity, this is another site that I have interest in using one day. Another opportunity, to using social media is the ease at which documents can be edited and handled. Having both Drop Box and Google Docs available to the public, it creates opportunities for collaboration.

I truly believe that the web provides so many wonderful opportunities. If someone does not know the answer to something, the answer is just seconds away. This then creates a fuller bank of knowledge enhancing their educational journey. The web provides endless means of learning new ideas. I consider myself a lifelong learner, so the web would be a great opportunity for me to explore my lifelong learner goals. Also, the web provides many opportunities to collaborate with those that you know and those that you don’t know. It’s a great concept for everyone to learn because collaborating with others is truly a life skill. What a great way to practice collaboration online. In addition, I use the web to communicate to those I cannot talk to on a daily basis. Those friends and family members that are far away or those parents that I need to contact all become very accessible via the web. The distance disappears and the communication takes seconds to get to that person.

Being that many opportunities were presented, I also saw some of the presenters discuss the dangers on social media. I never actually thought that others viewed the time spent on social networking sites a problem. In college, Facebook was just introduced. At this point in time, only college students with college emails were allowed on. This site when I was an undergrad (2005-2009) was completely a distraction to my studies. Since being a part of Facebook since 2005, I can confidently say I have learned to time manage.  A couple of years later, another site that I find myself on multiple times a day is Pinterest. Unfortunately, after undergraduate work, I have learned to block out time chunks for these sites. I wish I blocked out time while I was an undergrad. Another good point made by Lydia Timmons, was the credibility of the sites. I truly never learned “valid” sites from “invalid” sites while in middle school and high school. These were the years when the internet was starting to become a necessity for education. Unfortunately, I was never taught early in my “Internet” training the valid and invalid sources available online. Another pitfall that I recently noticed is a similar pitfall that Stephen mentions. A couple of months ago, I recently got my first smartphone. I was hardly checking Facebook, never had an Instagram account, or a Nike + account. Now, the convenience of the social media pushes me to constantly check what is going on. I never checked social media sites so much before my Iphone arrived. Checking this social media, could be a danger to my other priorities but it can also danger other people’s life. So many people are checking their social networking sites while driving. Although, there are laws in most states forbidding people to use their phones, people still go ahead and check their sites while driving. Another, pitfall of social media could be that it ultimately determines your future career, internship or college choice. More and more employers are checking social networking sites. It makes me question.. since I have been working for four years with the same school district, would they have the interest or care to go ahead and check my Facebook page for example? Back when applying for jobs, I do not think many employers utilized these tools to find out more of their candidate. However, in four years things have changed.

I came across a diagram of the top 10 social networking sites. I have an account with 5 of 10 sites. My connection with Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, Pinterest, and Google+ all to me are beneficial opportunities for my life. Whether it be keeping connections with friends, finding helpful articles, or communicating all of these sites are opportunities. This is a simple visual that helps me compare myself to the others that are connected with social networking. It’s interesting to see how I compare.  The above image was taken from http://r-rwebdesign.com/blog/?p=1596

The below video clip asks the question “what does the industrial revolution, Renaissance time period and social networking time period”  have in common. It was such a catchy introduction, I decided to keep watching. I never put together that these periods all impacted and made a significant contribution to mankind. I really liked that connection this recent video made so I wanted to share it to the class. The link was found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bveXo-BZrJQ.


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Watching class online..wishing I was present in class

As I was watching class from afar I decided to make some connections with some of my classmates! Here are some connections that I made with my classmates while watching class: Meg Grotti- Meg, we had class together in the past! I really like your drawing of shoes on your about me site.  Stacy Kotch-Jester- We both teach in Appoquinimink School District and I like pinterest too! Sam Johnson- Sam, we have also had class together in the past. I think it is very interesting that you worked for Dupont at one point! Charles Mac-I think its interesting that you teach college! I would love to teach college one day! Amy Mooney- That picture is adorable on your about me. That’s great that you got free computers! That job msut be challenging teaching other teachers about technology! Ethan- I like your background! Chris Patterson- I have a degree in elementary education as well! Micheal- That’s great that you teach in a private school in Wilmington! Alex Reid- I’m looking into the Doctorate program as well.. But not for a couple of years! Congrats for going for your degree. Steve- That’s so cool about the ipad program at your school! And this is where I leave to go to Open House.


While watching class later this week I had the opportunity to reflect on class: You asked the question what does it mean to be offline? To me being offline, is completely shutting down my computer/ phone. If I am doing school work, chances are I have social media tabs open in the background. Even though, I am not actively engaged in those social media sites, they are still there where I can see them! I like being offline. I feel like I can just relax once I am not connected to the world. However, I tend to check the social media sites as soon as I come home from work. This takes my mind off of work and the social media helps me bring myself out of work mode! However, I will allow myself a certain amount of time then turn it off to grade papers and be “teachery” or “Studious”.  I agree with a classmate when she states that it could be scary going offline. I never thought of that before!

Facts: The facts are not filtered when they come to you in a search. Some things might be irrelevant. I tried to google myself and I only came up on google+. This is still new to me, so I am going to try to see if I can make this more private! Evernote.com seems like a great concept! I cannot wait to try to use it!

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FERPA statement

Personal FERPA statement

I, KAITLIN CRAIG, understand and accept that some of my academic work for the fall 2012 semester will be published on the open web.

I also disclose that the work I will be putting up online is done as a part of the EDUC439/639 class at the University of Delaware. The home page of this open class is located at http://openteaching.ud-css.net/.

Unless content put up can potentially damage my online reputation, I also pledge to leave it online until at least December 21, 2012, the end of the fall semester.

Under those terms, I waive parts of my FERPA-granted rights for the purpose of exploring social media and web 2.0, excluding private conversations with colleagues and course grades.

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Expectations for this course:

I teach middle school and I would love to gather tools to help me reach the “digital native” throughout this course. I would love to provide various tools to the students to help them study, learn and engage in science. Being a science teacher, I feel that I will be able to learn about many tools that a  science class can benefit from. I also want to learn about opportunities for a teacher to grow professionally through social networking. I am sure the possibilities are endless of how to incorporate social networking into the classroom. I just want to learn about all of the options available, for cost but mostly I am interested in the free programs. I would love to find out if a system like blackboard, sakai, or canvas are available for teachers to use in their own classroom! I expect to be learning alot, as the first two weeks, I am already introduced to new sites!


I just created my “about me” site!

Check it out at:


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