Monday, August 29, 2011

Putting your best foot forward

When you present yourself to others, in person, on the phone, live audio, or online, first impressions do count. The importance of your reputation becomes crystal clear when you apply to schools, colleges, and universities and even more crucial when you apply for a job.
Put yourself in the other person’s shoes for a moment. You have a job opening for a clerk typist 3 (a common designation in Pennsylvania) and 2700 applicants. Are you going to wade through resumes for people who call themselves the name of a film star from the other side of the tracks on social media sites? Are you going to hire someone who has pictures on their profile that are suggestive? Are you going to offer a second interview to someone who regularly uses language that would make a grandmother blush?
So how do you put your best foot forward online?
1. Username – Pick your pseudonym carefully. If you are under 18 (or 21 depending on your country of residence and your comfort level), do choose and use the same pseudonym everywhere online. Ask your grandmother what she thinks of your potential username BEFORE you use it. Consider your email address too. Many sites display your email address as well as your username.
2. Profile Picture – If you are under 18, DO NOT post your photo online. Use an avatar maker, and there are plenty, or a logo (like the Nike swoosh). Make your profile pic be your personal brand without jeopardizing your online safety.
3. Language – Remember that your grandparents have plenty of time on their hands, now that they are retired and they are probably reading everything you write. Do not use language that you would not use with them.
4. Information – Be careful WHAT you post online. Do not provide your address, your birthday, or phone number, or post that you will be at Big Macs at the Main Street Mall at 8:00pm.
5. Content - What you write can be as impressive as how you write. Try to discuss your area of interest. Try not disparaging other people by name and not discussing the latest beer bash at the local college.
As the new school year begins here in the USA, many of you will be creating user accounts on different platforms. Take a moment to think about your digital reputation and how that will affect the rest of your life. If you think anything you post online is private and can be deleted, I refer you to
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Monday, August 22, 2011

Announcing the Flat Classroom® Workshop for 2012 - Mumbai, India!

Announcing the Flat Classroom® Workshop at ASB Unplugged, February 2012. Our wiki has been updated and there is a link to a registration form at

This promises to be an amazing experience once again for educators and students. It is also being held in conjunction with the release of our book, "Flattening Classrooms, Engaging Minds". We do hope you can join us! More details about the program coming soon. However you may like to browse the wiki from 2010:

Don't forget to join our Flat Classroom® Conference Ning and join the group for this event!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Flat Classroom® Projects - applications now open for elementary, middle and high school projects

Applications are invited now for a selection of internationally recognised and award winning global projects run by Flat Classroom® to start in September 2011. Co-founders Vicki Davis and Julie Lindsay are excited to be offering these opportunities for classrooms globally to connect, co-create and learn together in a carefully designed and supported digital environment.

The Digiteen™ Project explores digital citizenship through interaction and provides an opportunity for students to not only talk about digital citizenship, but experience via online connection, collaboration, shared research and presentation. It also has an action project component where a classroom designs an action to be carried out in their own school community and then shared back to the global partnership.

The Flat Classroom® Project is designed to develop cultural understanding, skills with Web 2.0 and other software, experience in global collaboration and online learning, awareness of what it means to live and work in a flat world, while researching and discussing the ideas developed in Friedman's book.

The ‘A Week in the Life...’ Project aims to join Elementary School classrooms globally with a view to exploring what life is like in each area/country through discussion, sharing and collecting multimedia to create final products together. The curriculum focus is Interdisciplinary, how we live, how we communicate, cultural understanding and awareness.

Entry to a each project is via application and subscription. In order to help meet the subscription price, teachers can apply for a limited number of sweat equity positions as ‘lead teachers’.

All details for each of these outstanding projects can be found linked from the Flat Classroom® website. We welcome inquiries to

Watch this space for more announcements of new projects coming, including the repeat of the popular ‘Eracism’ Project, as well as an opportunity for educators to join our next Flat Classroom® Certified Teacher course, also starting in September 2011.

Also, our book, ‘Flattening Classroom, Engaging Minds: Move to Global Collaboration one Step at a Time’ is due for release January 2012. Find out more at

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