Signs that you are a Connected Educator

This is a guest post from @JosePopoff, an amazing Science educator from Honduras. He blogs at http://www.josepopoff.com/, and this post was originally published here.

Yes, I know.  You have probably read an article with a like title before.  But I promise you I have not read any and this is a list I came up from my own personal experience and that of those other amazing educators that I take pride of being connected with.

So, you are a connected educator and let´s face it, something in you  has changed.  You don´t even speak the same way you did when your classroom had those wooden or brick walls that you have brought down.  I collected some symptoms that you may have been through since you decided to go international.  In no particular order, here they are:

You are on Twitter.  I’ve read remarkable teachers tweet that this social network has expanded their knowledge in a few months much more than five years of college preparation.  They can’t be wrong.

  1. You find tremendous value in global connections and understand how great and valuable these experiences are for your students.
  2. To you, the world is flat!  Period.
  3. You blog and comment on blogs.  You’ve understood that blogging is an amazing way of sharing  your  knowledge and experiences with the world and building together.
  4. You make an extra effort to report your measurements in at least two units.  This one is especially easy if you are a Science teacher.  But you are sensitive enough to understand that, unfortunately, not all of us are familiar with the same units.
  5. Every time you meet a teacher from a foreign country you think: “Mystery Skype!”  Or am I the only one?
  6. Remember when you used your fingers to count and add in elementary school?  Now you use them to count time zones and figure out how many hours ahead or behind your new contact is from you.  You know you do!
  7. Your plans for the future include visiting some members of your PLN.  Of course you are already practicing all your “oh, you look so much better in person’s, “you look so much younger”s,  “I didn’t recognize you’s, etc.,  for when that moment comes.
  8. You have realized how international the English language is.  Of course, you respect those who speak it with funny accents because that means they speak at least two languages.
  9. Every time a teacher asks you to connect, well, let´s just say we all pretty much know what the answer to that is.
  10. You have substituted your “Good morning” and “Good evening” with “Good morning/afternoon/evening!” or simply “Hello”.
  11. You belong to at least one global community.  Where else would you get all those amazing connections from otherwise?
  12. If you are on the move and have to make a stop, first thing you do is look for a wi-fi hotspot.
  13. You do not own a Blackberry, or if you do, you want another phone since you discovered that RIM does not have a Skype application.  What!?  Ok, maybe that´s just me.
  14. Have to get up at 5 am to get the kids ready?  Ugh, what a drag! Have to get up at 4 am to Skype with a class in Japan?  No problem!
  15. The verb you use the most in your spoken and written language is “skype” and most of its conjugate forms.  The funniest thing is that “skype” is not even a verb!  Luckily, “hanging out” is a verb.
  16. You are watching less TV.  I mean, when was the last connection you made through FOX, right?

If you are manifesting any of these symptoms, please go to your nearest local teacher and infect them!

I was going to write as sign #16 “You write a comment to this blog post”, but of course I am not going to write such a presumptuous remark.  But, can you think of any other sign I missed here?  Add it, join the fun, and keep rocking it in this international endeavour.  Thank God the world is such a small place!