Monday, May 24, 2010

Being Socially Savvy in School: An Introduction to Integrating FCCLA into Social Media

Today our own social media guru, Lauren Rhodes, discusses the importance of being technology savvy and connecting your chapter and classroom through social media.

We don’t have a choice on whether we do social media; the question is how well do we do it?” – Erik Qualman

Many educators are asking “Why should I use social media? It’s not like I have access to it in the classroom.” To begin, let’s addressing the first question “Why should I use social media?” Social media is not going anywhere. Rather, technology has barely scratched the surface on the possibilities of what social media is capable of. In another five years, the Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites that we have today are going to seem archaic. Now to address the statement “It’s not like I have access to it in the classroom” – it’s only a matter of time. Social media is so rampant and is changing the face of communication as we know it, before long the education system and government will be on board. For example, remember Barack Obama’s Presidential candidacy media campaign. Many prominent advertising professionals credit his campaign’s use of social media as giving him a significant edge in the race to the presidency and as we all know now, Obama is president. Also, many Senators, Congressmen, and government officials have Facebook pages, including President Obama.

What are the benefits for integrating social media into FCCLA? Social media was designed to enhance communication, making it easier to network and to generate interest in a cause. Social media can be used to augment what is being instructed in the classroom and cultivate your FCCLA chapter. Imagine being able to communicate directly with your chapter on a forum that your students interact with on a daily basis. Where you can share conference photos, classroom videos, remind members that a fundraiser is launching tomorrow, and have a video chat with another chapter in real time. For example, using sites like Facebook and Twitter you can communicate, promote, recruit, and network quickly and easily with your chapter, school, other advisers, etc. You can even network professionally and connect with other advisers on sites like LinkedIn and communicate live globally via web chat with Skype.

Over the next few months, I will guide you through six of the top and emerging forms of social media and explain how to incorporate them with FCCLA:

  • June - Facebook
  • June - Twitter
  • August - YouTube
  • August - Flickr
  • September - LinkedIn
  • September – Skype

I’m looking forward to the next few months. In the meantime, if you have any questions or comments you are not comfortable posting please contact me at

Monday, May 17, 2010

FCCLA Lesson Plans & Activities

Following an April edition of the FCCLA E-Adviser, Paula Chessher of Warren High School, Texas, reminded us that the lesson plans and activities page of the FCCLA website is a great resource. She writes, “I would love to see more of the lesson plans available! That is a fantastic source and service for FCS teachers! …the lesson plans and materials are invaluable to me!”

As the year comes to a close, testing ends and graduation is on our heels, we want to make a plug for adding your lesson plans and activities to the FCCLA website. While you are cleaning for the summer, take some time to look through the resources you use. Submit your ideas to us and we’ll add them to the website.

Without the support and participation of advisers, these resources would be unavailable. Thank you for your generous contributions!

Monday, May 10, 2010

National Youth Traffic Safety Month

This week’s blog come from National Executive Council member, Abbi Sudtelgte, Vice President of Programs.

The spring NOYS meeting (National Organizations for Youth Safety) was held Wednesday, April 28th through Friday, April 30th in Washington D.C. Along with myself, Leilani Mullins, Vice President of Membership, and Bethany Standley, Program Coordinator, Michael Benjamin, Executive Director, also attended the NOYS meeting. Throughout the whole conference the main focus was traffic safety as May is National Youth Traffic Safety Month. Thursday at the National Press Club NOYS had a press conference with the Secretary of Transportation, Rae LaHood. Friday morning we participated in Oprah’s No Phone Zone Day at the Newseum. Oprah had set up five different no phone zone sites across the United States, Washington D.C. being one of them. Lani and I were even able to get our picture with Gayle King! As follow-up I was interviewed on Keloland, which is South Dakota’s main new broadcast TV station.

Abbi and Leilani holding their No Phone Zone signs.

Abbi and Leilani with Gayle King at the Oprah event at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Monday, May 3, 2010

10 Minutes to Make a Difference

The Census Bureau has posted online at information on the critical phase we are now entering known as Non-Response Follow-Up. This phase involves trying to account for the roughly 48 million households that did not mail back their Census form. We will be sending approximately 635,000 census takers out to count all non-responding households, and we need your help in convincing them why it is important for them to talk to the census taker.

You can find out more information on census takers at our website: