As our Powerful Learning Practice Network grows, we are doing some amazing things with communities of practice, e-learning, raising the voices of forward-looking practitioners, and more. With these and other PLP initiatives underway, we felt it was time to establish an advisory board to help us keep our work out on the edge of professional learning in the 21st century.

We’d like to introduce our advisory board to you, one by one, and so we’ve come up with seven questions for each of them so you can have a little peek into what they’re thinking and who they are.

Meet Howard Rheingold, 2012-2013 Advisory Board Member

Howard Rheingold

Howard Rheingold PLP Advisory Board Member

I’m Howard Rheingold, an independent scholar, lifelong freelance writer and Reed graduate. I’ve lived in the San Francisco Bay Area most of my life. I’m a passionate learner, novice teacher and online instigator. I paint and garden when I’m not hanging out online. I teach courses on social media issues and social media literacies at Stanford, and have taught at UC Berkeley. A great deal of my material is available at

Why did you decide to become a part of the Advisory Board at Powerful Learning Practice?

Will Richardson’s book was a godsend when I started using social media in my teaching.  When I started cultivating a PLN, Sheryl and her work came to my attention.

What are you up to professionally?

I just published my first book, NetSmart,  in 10 years! I plan to teach a course at Stanford based on it. I’ve made a college syllabus available for any instructor to use or modify as they wish and I’ve also forked a high school version.  I am looking for high school teachers who want to be added as commenters so this can be modified further for high school use.  Please let me know if you are interested.

If you had the power to make an immediate change to our educational system, what would you implement?

Information and social media literacies starting in eighth grade!

What is your favorite quote and what does it mean to you?

When I started using email in 1985, I made up this signature, which still motivates me:   what it is–>is–>up to us

Where can people find you online?

Twitter: @hrheingold

Any final words?

My mother was a teacher. She was my art teacher. I came to teaching late in life. I regard it as a calling — one of the highest possible callings.


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Christen Dodd

Christen is a Connected Learning Specialist for PLP. After earning her MEd. in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Virginia, she began her career as a K-5 Computer Resource Teacher. She enjoyed collaborating with staff and creating technology lessons that engaged students, but caught “the bug” for presenting to educators on a national level. For eleven years, Christen trained educators both face-to-face and virtually with Verizon Thinkfinity. She also served as their Distance Learning Coordinator and Vice President of Professional Development. Christen has enjoyed working with Powerful Learning Practice since 2011 and continuing her work with educators, parents and students alike. Currently, she is also an instructional technology specialist at her children's JK-8 Catholic school.

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