Who is in my Sphere of Influence?

February 13, 2008

Sharon Peters presented a very thought provoking presentation in my EC&I 831 class last night called Spheres of Influence.  The things that I really started to think about during and after this presentation were:  who is in my sphere?  why are they there?  should they be?  who else should be in my sphere of influence?  I think that these are important questions that we should all be asking especially with the dawning of so many social networks available to us on the Internet.  Personally, I have found myself looking to my new social network connections for advice, companionship and to be challenged intellectually more than I have to most of my friends.  And I find myself adding to this sphere on a daily basis and feeling excited about new challenges and relationships that may emerge through this fascinating network.

Marlene Gillanders feels exactly as I do about technology and education as posted in her blog: “Therefore, my question is, how do I go about changing the views of technology in my school division? Again, I feel as educators it is our role to make our students aware of the technology and  teach them how to use the technology appropriately.” And I loved to see that Sharon Peters’ presentation also challenged us to think about how we have done things in the past and how they could be improved with the use of the technology now available to us as Travis Kelln said: “If Only”.

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5 Responses to “Who is in my Sphere of Influence?”

  1. leahdewhurst Says:

    I think we were all pondering that question of “Who is in our sphere of influence?” after the presentation. I just can’t believe the level of trust that we create through our networks. Just setting up my class blog I relied on Kathy Cassidy for her input and expertise. Having not met her personally, she responded immediately with open arms and has given extremely helpful advice. The power of social networks.

  2. ccossar Says:

    I agree, Leah. It is interesting who we “meet” up with in these social networks and grow to trust because they are doing something interesting. I just wish I had been doing this networking a long time ago.

  3. Dave Bircher Says:

    I think that we can teach some of these tools and show teachers how they can be used, we will see more teachers use them. I find that teachers will use technology more when it is not an “add-on.” Even for myself, some current assignments and practices I “tweaked” a little, to incorporate technology. However, I did not change the basic premise of the task from what I did before – just made it digital.

  4. ccossar Says:

    I agree that it should just be a part of what teachers do and it won’t be seen as such a tedious task. Glad you are going digital 🙂


  5. […] February 29, 2008 Dean Shareski presented in our EC&I 831 grad class on Feb 26 about building a research team through our network. I immensely enjoyed his presentation, as it really clarified what it is that I have been trying to do over the past couple of weeks in particular. I have been struggling a little bit in this class because I am no longer in the education field (though still love the profession and would be back in it if I could just teach without all of the politics and discipline issues). Finding an audience for what I am now passionate about, human resources, and understanding what my classmates are discussing during our class meetings and in their blogs is more challenging than I would have imagined. So I set the task for myself of trying to expand my network. I am now following a lot of blogs and started using Twitter more. I also branched out to try to find people in human resources in addition to the wonderful educators that I have networked with. After our class with Dean and then our class on the 27th where we discussed where everyone in the class was at, I really felt similar to Todd – that I am not alone and really looking at “who is in my network” (similar to what I felt after Sharon Peters’ presentation -see post). […]


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