Subscribing To Blogs With Google Reader

At Engaging Educators, we believe that the 21st century teacher should have a set of technology skills that they are comfortable using both on their own and in the classroom. Call it an EdTech Toolkit, if you will.

This toolkit should contain tools that enhance students’ learning experiences and help the teacher become a learner, too. That way, professional development is a continual process and the teacher is able to create a broad Personal Learning Network (PLN).

So what’s the first thing that should be in that toolkit? That’s a toughie, I know. But I think I’m pretty confident about my answer: RSS. RSS feeds, or “Real Simple Syndication” for the uninitiated, allow web content to be delivered via subscription.

If every teacher regularly used a feed reader to have useful, interesting teaching ideas and articles delivered directly to them, just imagine the possibilities.

Take for example an average fifth grade teacher. They could get ideas about writing projects from Two Writing Teachers and The Small Nouns, news about new books from 100 Scope Notes and Jen Robinson’s Book page, inspiration from TED, and technology integration tips from Free Technology for Teachers, Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day, and iLearn Technology. All for free. All in one place. And all it takes is a little time to set up and a few minutes each day to log in and peruse.

I read once that only 10 percent of Americans use RSS feeds to subscribe to web content. As startling as that is in our fast-paced high tech world, if that stat applies to teachers, it’s even more concerning.

So we feel that knowledge of RSS feeds and subscribing to blogs is something every teacher should know how to do. And to get you started, here’s a little video: