I wrote a post last week about my interest in exploring different web applications useful for student social networking.  In other words, tools that could be used by different classes throughout the world to collaborate.

I’m exploring this kind of network to use specifically as my class begins to work with “sister” classes around the world.  I posted earlier about tools I thought they could use with students in places where time zones cooperate so that both classes could be online at the same time

In addition, it’s very possible that this sort of timing is not going to be possible.  So I need to identify other tools students can use when that’s the case.  Blogs, specifically Edublogs, could be one way with students commenting back-and-forth, as well as using VoiceThread (once we can use it in our District, at least!). A closed social network could be another.  Such a network might also be useful if there are more than two classes working together.

Since I wrote that post there have been a few new interesting developments.

Steve Hargadon came up with a great list of education-related social networks, including many student ones.  Most of the groups he listed use Ning.

Also, I learned (from Mashable) about another site that offers the possibility of a closed network that classes can use called Big Tent.

Britne Rockwell from Ed Tech Hacks and I have been discussing writing a comparison of the sites I’ve mentioned in these two posts (and possibly including others).  With luck, one of us will write it soon (I hope its Britne!) so it will help me figure out which one I should use next month with my students!

I’ve also written about Mixbook, which is a slideshow creation site that has an intentional feature that allows “not-in-real time” collaboration.

Any other ideas out there?

(Rita Zeinstejer points out in the comments that I forgot to include Daft Doggy Voice Recording in this list.   That’s an excellent addition that I should have remembered, particularly since I ranked it near the top of several of my “The Best…” lists.   Students can easily leave voice recordings for each other using that web application.  I would also add Daft Doggy’s web tour feature, where students can also leave comments.)