Has anyone tried using Ning with students as a social networking/writing space? I would be most interested in knowing how it went, if it has happened, as I am considering this platform (along with Elgg) for a big online writing space for middle school students. The past two years, we have used Manila blogs and, uhhh, too complicated and didn't do what we wanted.

So if you have used social networking with students, could you give me some advice?


Tags: networking, social, socialnetworking

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I wish I could read German. The program sounds interesting.
Such interesting conversations. I know classblogmeister allows students to upload podcasts and videos, and it does give them a page to create. But I do think they miss meeting others. In fact, we have discussed webcam calling just to meet classes we comment back and forth with. A social network would allow us to better "meet" people. As far as age limitations go, there must be some social network out there specifically designed for children. Doesn't Ning allow setting up your own social network? Does it allow blocking all who don't fit into the group? So if it were set up for a specific group...say specific classes, then people not registered would be blocked. Does any of this make sense?
Yes, Lisa, that makes perfect sense.
And these are the questions I am trying to pursue right now.
So perhaps we need to set up a Ning for classroom teachers. You'd have to be invited in or get permission to come in and...should we try it out Kevin?
If you make it, I will join.
I have one started I will invite you to our Middle school teachers site.
shoot me an email at ebert_s@af.k12.wi.us
Yes, I have requested a class at a time for lit circles. Everyone else is blocked from entering the site. The problem is this, will students give out there passwords?
This has less to do with Ning, than with Elgg, but a colleague of mine from the National Writing Project put together this video on using social networking in the classroom.

I've been using Ning for a week now. I have an English as a foreign language site that just grew out of control and I wanted a place to really just address questions in one forum and also to foster the teaching growth of those people using my resources. I've done zero advertising and it has grown. My website for anyone teaching esl/efl is www.ddd.batcave.net An example of just wanting to share and it growing and growing from a few files to more.... My ning is eflclassroom 2.0. (http://eflclassroom.ning.com and has achieved the same growth in a week. One question I have ............ what would people consider the "threshold" in order to say a social network is viable, dynamic, "alive"????? I know it depends on the network type itself but what about ning, what is the magic number?

I have also set up a ning for the 100+ teachers who will be doing a summer camp I head. I really wanted to inspire these foreign teachers (Koreans) to use a social network all in English and hopefully take it back to their own classrooms and schools to use. As it is, on their school sites, there is way too much Korean and it isn't beneficial to students. I'd love to see if ning could ever become a way for students who are studying English to band together and help each other..... I am a big cheerleader for social networks and technology in general as being MOST beneficial in this area of teaching - language. The possibilities are endless and it really will transform language learning....

As I said before, I'll let you know how my Korean teachers find Ning. They have quite an advanced culture of internet social networking here (greatest internet saturation in the world), so it seems a fit. I did find the sign up a real hassle (it is a private network). I entered and invited all people. Endless ones returned (seems Korean servers often send back email thinking it is spam if foreign???), big problematic thing and it would be better if you could make it public initially and then when everything was in place, switch to private....

More to come from Korea.


Thanks for the post of this video. I'm skimming the report right now, after having printed it. Take a look, pretty insightful...
Thanks for linking the report.
Kevin, The concern that I have with ning for students is that it requires email addresses. I don't know that we want to be asking students to give out their email addresses?



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