Students often say that once a teacher uses a web 2.0 tool in the classroom, it’s no longer cool. So be it. But I was introduced today to a great tool to engage students called Fakebook.
Fakebook allows your students to create a ‘fake’ Facebook profile for whatever character/historical person you are currently studying. Take a look at this Fakebook Profile from Benjamin Franklin:
and this one from Confucius:
At first you might think that something like this might be a waste of time. It looks like Facebook. It smells like Facebook. And Facebook has no place in the classroom. But I challenge you to be open and consider the following:
1. Most students have a Facebook account. They know how to post, comment, like and share. The learning curve for learning how to use Fakebook is minimal.
2. The amount of content that can be added to the Fakebook profile is amazing! Instead of having a student write an essay about the life and times of Benjamin Franklin, why not ask your students to create a Fakebook profile? They can add important dates, pictures, friends, and post status updates about important events in their lives.
3. It’s different. It’s a different way to engage your students. It’s a different way to assess a student’s learning…..
3. You, as the teacher, don’t have to be ‘friends’ with your students on Facebook. It isn’t Facebook. It’s Fakebook. And it is supposed to be used for educational purposes.
So, how can you use this in your classroom?
Attention History Teachers: Create Fakebook pages for major historical figues. Have ‘them’ start conversations with other historical figures.
Attention Geography Teachers: Create Fakebook pages to represent a variety of NGO’s (non-governmental organizations) and non-profit organizations. Try to change the world….
Attention Science Teachers: Have students create Fakebook pages for famous scientists OR create a personal fakebook pages for their future self as a world famous researcher
Attention Business Teachers: Have students create Fakebook pages for a company and do some online marketing.
I could go on and on, but I hope have sparked some interest and you might add this tool to your arsenal of resources to use in the classroom.