The Power of a PLN

What’s a PLN?

The acronym actually stands for a few different possibilities: Personal Learning Network or Professional Learning Network.  Whatever you call it, your PLN will become your “tribe”, your support, your challengers, your collaborators, your friends.


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Shared under a creative commons BY-NC-SA licence by Paula Naugle


Our students live in a networked world, where understanding how to access information is a key digital literacy.  If we build our understanding of how to learn in a networked environment, we are better able to make the decisions to help our students to do this as well.

How do we build a PLN?

Building a Professional/Personal Learning Network takes some time.  You have to be willing to work on it each day.  It’s a commitment to self-directing your own learning. We demonstrate here how even 10 to 15 minutes each day can make a huge difference in your practice.

The easiest way to begin connecting with people is on Twitter. Principals in Ontario have shared here why building their PLN on Twitter is so critical to their work.

Building your Twitter stream or “feed” involves finding interesting people to follow.  You can find people to follow by:

a) asking others

b) viewing interesting tweets and following people as a result, particularly in Twitter Chats that align with your professional interests.

c) following those suggested to you on the Twitter site

d) following the lists created by other Twitter users

e) participating in #FollowFriday (or #FF) – Twitter users suggest great people to follow each Friday

Screen Shot 2015-10-20 at 5.29.25 AM
Shared by Tom Whitby on My Island View (click the picture for the full post)



Learning Activities:

1. Let’s help each other build a PLN.

Please take some time today to share a few (2-5) educators who add value to your PLN on Twitter.  If you are new to Twitter, you can use this list to start building a rich feed very quickly.

2. We learn in and through practice.  A great way to practice is to participate in a “Twitter Challenge”

#ontedleaders Twitter Challenge was posted on this site (see below) yesterday, and it can be found here.  Use Google Translate if you need it.  English versions are also posted on Twitter: #ontedleaders and #ossemooc

3. Build your cohort of learners.  What can we learn together?

How can you contribute to the learning of others?  Share your Twitter handle with the group.  We will build an OSSEMOOC list of participants in this MOOC so that we can follow each other.  When you are ready, please contribute here to build the list.




Tom Whitby: Whom Should I Follow on Twitter?

Will Richardson: Create Your PLN: 6 Easy Steps

Edublogs: What the Heck is a PLN?


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