Does anyone know of a social networking environment that could be used in schools? I have a teacher that would like to create a space for students to participate in book reviews. I have looked at Imbee but it seems a bit too elementary for high school students. I do like, however, the security that it offers for a school setting. Any ideas would be appreciated...thanks!

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why are you asking about a social net work on a social network that you could use. I would start a ning network for that class.

Annemiek Kes
Why? That's simple, I am looking for something that allows for control on the part of the instructor. A place where students can set up accounts and the network is limited to just that class of students, not the entire world. Also, I need something that allows for moderation on the part of the instructor. I will look at Ning and see if it will give me the level of control that I need.
Have you thought of using a Moodle? It has the same functions as you might see in a network like this, (forum, blog, etc.). The missing link is the fact that each student would not have his/her own page. I think you could use NING with high school kids as they meet the age threshold. You can make it private, for sure. You can moderate here in that you can delete things and have approvals needed for postings and uploading of videos, etc. I think either might work depending on your priorities. I recently set up a NING for teachers interested in using hand helds in teaching,and it was really easy. I did it in about 30 minutes! :) Here it is--- www.ipodeducators.ning.com Very user friendly!

Good Luck!

Sue P
If book reviews is all she wants to do s/he could start with a blog. I have one set up but don't plan to use it until I teach my kids how to write a good book review. Here is the site Kids Review Books if she wants to see what it would look like,

Blogs would allow the option to comment on the book reviewed but Blogger doesn't allow for comments on the comments (a threaded discussion). I have done threaded book discussions using Moodle, let me know if you want to see that.
Ning is, of course, a really good option, and starting your own Ning network gives you a lot of control. Your students have to be 13 or older, and you can make the network private and invitation only if you like. Instructions on getting their ad-free network for student networks at http://education.ning.com/.

Moodle is an Open Source program you can install on your own server, as Sue mentioned. Elgg is another Open Source program which is for social network specifically.

Cheers,

Steve

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