EdTech 543: Create your PLE Diagram

  1. Create a PLE diagram of your online communities.
  2. Represent at least 10 different online communities in your graphic and explicitly show connections between the communities. You can be as creative as you’d like with this depiction.  You can hand draw and take an image, or use any type technology.  Post a link and screenshot of your PLE so you classmates could view it on Facebook and Tweet your diagram out using the #EdTechSN hashtag.
  3. Complete a Reflection: 


Here is my PLE Diagram & the Process:

Here is my PLE Image.  It was hand created and scanned.  I found a black and white image of a flower with multiple petals.  I then printed the various icons of the social networking sites I use.  I cut these out and fit them into the flower (of course adding the personal touch of coloring them too).  I chose a flower to represent my growth with using various social networking sites.  I am the center, the sites I use most often are more prominently featured.  I feel by expanding my networks (my petals) my knowledge has bloomed!

Kim Hefty PLE Kim Hefty PLE

I then used color coded bumble bees to show how each of the sites are connected.  I broke the connections into 3 main criteria: Connect Information, Share Information, and Gather Information.  Here is how they are all connected:

PLE Diagram 2


What did you learn about yourself when looking at your PLE?

I really wanted this representation to be very personal and creative.  I tried multiple different programs to create a basic diagram with connections … but none of them felt like me.  Then, at the beginning of the week, I had to have a small surgical procedure.  My 13 year old son bought me flowers and put them beside my bed to help me feel better.  As I looked at the beauty of the various flowers I was so struck by the connection between the center of the flower and the various petals.  Even if some of the outer petals fell off, it was still beautiful.  It really was my “aha” moment for the connections I have made in this class.  I am the center and the petals are the various sites I use.  I tend to use more sites to gather information and share information.  Some of the sites I use I am sure will “fall off” but many of my core connections are still strong.

How does your PLE compare to other peers in class?

Amanda H:

Amanda used a beautiful image of a Fibonacci Spiral found in nature in the Aloe plant.  Amanda used four categories to represent her connections: communities that she participates in, where she gathers information, where she curates and links information, and where she creates new content and hosts it.  I basically had the same connective categories … I just combined curation and gathering; however, I can definitely see the value of 4 categories.

We had a lot of similarities:  Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, YouTube, Flickr, and WordPress.  Our similarities seemed to be more of the “sharing” type of sites.

We also had many differences:  Pinterest, Storify, Tumblr, Home Energy pros, Basecamp, Google Alerts, Feedly, Haiku Deck, and Vimeo.  Some of the ones Amanda selected I felt like I should have used as well, like Feedly and Vimeo, but some I have never heard of, like Basecamp and Haiku Deck.

Nathan K:

Nathan’s imagery was that of a fairy ring.  It was organic representing that it was constantly growing and changing. It used visualization to illustrate interconnectedness.

We shared Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, YouTube, Moodle, and Diigo.  We seemed to share more of the gathering and sharing type of connections.  I also think that Nathan and I were going for more of the connections that can be represented in nature.

Our differences were with Blogger, I use WordPress instead, and mail and ScoopIt (why didn’t I think of those).  But there were 2 images that I’m not familiar with … Wiggio, and the “y”.

Sarah B:

Sarah’s diagram is that of a human body in what reminds me of a yoga pose.  I thought of the importance of keeping your balance when doing yoga.  The arrows only strengthened the concept of the body being in perfect balance.  I also liked how Sarah described the connections: Develop, Discuss, and Discover.  Three simple and concise words that perfectly describe what social networking is all about.

We shared WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, YouTube, Flickr, Moodle, Scribd, and Diigo.  We shared fairly equally in every category.

We did not have that many differences, I wish that I had also included Weebly and RSS feeds.  There were some images I didn’t recognize which led me to do some homework.  Here are many images/icons with their names:


Here is a great link of the Top 16 Social Media Icons

Andrew M.

Andrew had one of my favorite diagrams!  I love cooking and mixing different ingredients.  The title was also so cleaver “Bring Your Own Ingredients”.  This was the best analogy for taking many different items/sites and using your own personality to create something unique … such as “pie” or “soup” or “casserole”.

I think Andrew and I were very similar in that we were trying to reflect our own personality with the PLE diagrams.  We used a lot of the same sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, Moodle, and LinkedIn.

We also had a few key differences.  I really had never even thought of including Flipped Learning or EdWeb.  Those are great resources that help build and grow knowledge.

Katie S.

One of PLN partners.  I was so excited to see Katie’s work and compare it to my own since she, like me, is a math teacher.  I think Katie did the best job of really showing the connections between everything.  She made unique connections using Legos and multiple sites.  Katie really demonstrated the connections individually and collectively!

I had so many sites in common with Katie such as WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, YouTube, Flickr, and Diigo. I feel like we are drawn to a lot of the same resources that help math educators.

I had only a couple of differences with Katie, primarily Instagram and Pintrist.  I have not really figured out how to use those sites in what I do.  I will definitely be reaching out to Katie to learn more.

Alissa B

Alissa had one of the most beautiful images of hands connecting, sharing, learning and communicating. This is perfect image for more than this project … it’s a perfect image for education in general.  I could not only see the connections but the imagery was so strong I actually felt the connection at an emotional level.  The quote in the center really was the icing on the cake.

We had a lot of similarities such as Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, YouTube, Flickr, LinkedIn, Diigo and GoodReads.  So far, Alissa and I are the only ones who chose GoodReads!  I know we both actively participated in the discussion on censorship.  Although we come from very different educational perspectives it was so nice to see how we could really connect.

Alissa and I only had a few minor differences … Tumblr, Instagram, and Pintrist.  I would like to see how she applies these sites to her network.


I was blown away with everyone’s creativity and variety of expressions.  There were so many sites I never thought to include, but would if I could do over.  I also found myself learning about several new sources.  By comparing and contrasting myself and other student’s PLE diagrams I really began to explore new ideas and connections I had never previously considered.  What a fun activity!







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