1. Respect: We are polite, kind and appropriate at all times. Remember that many students, teachers, and others will view your comments.
Anyone is welcome to comment or join a discussion as long as he or she is respectful.
2. Fun: It's okay to have fun in this space, but if others are having a learning conversation either add to it positively or make your comments in a new post.
3. How to Participate: Ask questions. Answer questions. Share your learning. Synthesize ideas. Plan projects or assignments. Reflect on the process of learning.
4. Safety: In general, be reserved about revealing private details on web sites. You don't need to use your full name, but use enough of it so that everyone in your class will know who you are. Though this is a password-protected site, it is digital information that anyone could copy, forward, save to hard drive etc. Anything you type into a digital forum may last forever, so respect your own and others' privacy.
5. Decorating your personal space: Arrange your personal site to your taste, but keep it wholesome. It may be your choice to walk on the dark side, but one of the purposes of this site is to add to the world's light. Please, no gross, disgusting, immoral or irreverent photographs. Also, don't put up a background that makes your text hard to read. Communication is a primary purpose of this site, and design should enhance rather than obstruct communication.
6. Formality: The level of usage here is "informal standard English"--which is what is used in business, government and education for everyday work. No texting abbreviations. Use complete sentences and standard spelling and capitalization. Remember, the whole world is watching.
7. Anything you post here should be somehow related to English. The connection can be direct or indirect. If you're asked to explain your posting's relevance to English, you should have an answer. If you don't, bye-bye.
8. If I could disable the Friend feature of this ning, I would, but I can't. So, let's have no "Friend-ing" dramas. If another student requests to be your ning friend, you must accept that request before you do anything else on here.
(Many thanks to Mr. Michael Umphrey, author of The Power of Community-Centered Education: Teaching as a Craft of Place, for his help with these ning rules.)