There I was browsing my diigo network links and I found something that caught my eye:
10 Beneficial Facebook Pages For Educators To Check Out, written by K. Walsh. While reading the list of some of the "many Facebook pages that have been created as a resource to collect, share, and disseminate information about education and education technologies" it triggered a thought about Vicki Davis' views on teachers using Facebook with their students. While this post does not advocate teachers using FB with their students (it is more of a list of resources for teachers' life long learning, K. Walsh does discuss this elsewhere.
I went over to the Cool Cat Teacher blogpost on the topic. Similar to my issue in yesterday's post it seems that there are respected educators on both sides of the debate. Vicki has thought and investigated many aspects of teachers using FB in their classrooms and the argument for the other side is that students are using this site anyway and why not add relevance to your classes by using a tool that they are familiar with. I won't repeat Vicki's thoroughly thought through arguments - please read the post at her site (or reread it), but it is worth thinking through the arguments of those who espouse using Facebook with students in secondary school.
Millie Watts in a recent article for school and college leaders says that for her Facebook is valuable as a teaching and learning for these three reasons: speed and ease of use, Facebook connectivity which enables her to post articles she finds to Facebook page without leaving the site she is reading, and community interaction as past students remain connected and interact with present students.
I always steered clear of using Facebook with my students but I do wonder if things are changing now. For a collection of links about social media and education I would recommend John Larkin's post which may make us think again whichever side of the debate you have come down on. I would love to hear about your experiences.