Facebook Inspired Classroom

Yes, teaching with Facebook isn’t anything new but my kids and I still get excited about it! My fifth graders are too young to enter the Facebook world but that doesn’t mean we can’t pretend! I want to share two fun ways we incorporate Facebook to our learning experience. While these Facebook-inspired ideas may already be familiar to some of you, I hope my post can act as a springboard for future teaching ideas.

Class Status Updates

I love interactive bulletin boards and this is one of my favorites. My students everyday update their “halebook” statuses by writing a comment or question related to what we’ve learned in class that day. It’s a great quick assessment for me on what part of class was most memorable for them. Since my instructional time is jam-packed everyday, Halebook statuses have also become my way of quickly teaching and assessing writing mechanics.

One tip: Make sure your laminating paper is dry-erase friendly. Our school’s paper is so nice that dry-erase markers don’t work well on them. What you can do is purchase some dry-erase adhesive paper and cut them into rectangles. Works BEAUTIFULLY.

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Character Profiles

Two things about Facebook that stand out to me as helpful learning tools for my students:

1. The ability to tell information about yourself in a profile

2. The ability to share your thoughts in chronological order on your wall

Therefore, if you’re teaching anything where time and order is important, using a Facebook template really helps students understand the content. What you have to decide is if you want to use the actual Facebook site, a fakebook site, or a word processing template. For me, I created a Facebook template on Pages simply by adding text boxes and shape boxes. My students saved the templates and were able to type in the boxes, drag photos, import videos, and even manipulate the comments and likes feature.

If your students use Macs, please email me and I can send you my Facebook template doc compatible to Pages. PC users, unfortunately, I don’t have a compatible Microsoft Word version yet! However, here is my Halebook Template PDF as an example.

Facebook lesson possibilites:

  • Assign ocean organisms and use Facebook statuses to explain the food chain process. (organisms can even @mention one another when they have been consumed!)
  • Assign Civil War characters and use Facebook statuses to talk about significant events.
  • Teach retelling and inferring by creating a profile for a book character. Students will only write status updates on the important events and express the character’s thoughts or feelings. Works great for a class read-aloud  book too!
  • Make water molecule profiles and write statuses to show their journey through the weather cycle.
  • Assign a geometric figure, such as an isosceles triangle, and post statuses of their daily location (i.e. on the top of a house or in an easel).
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Food chain and ocean organisms

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How do you use Facebook in the classroom? Please share!

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