In the event you have been distracted by the budget crisis/shortfall for Texas public schools or caught up in the ‘madness’ over the DEN March Madness Mashup Final Round, you may have missed the bookmarks shared about creating fake Facebook pages. There has been a great deal of buzz on Twitter and other social networks about creating fake Facebook pages. This is a fantastic way to engage students about current events, historical events, political figures and a host of other ideas for use in the classroom. The fake Facebook pages are intended for educational use where students or teachers can create a fake Facebook page and ‘share’ information, images or anecdotes on a person’s fictitious Facebook page.
For instance, students can create a fake Facebook page for George Washington and post status updates of George Washington leading the troops against the British. There are several resources teachers can use to create fake Facebook pages and each of the tools mentioned below to create a fake Facebook page was created not to deceive, harass a person or poke fun of (pun intended!) someone. Working with fictional Facebook pages is a great opportunity to stress the importance of what not to share on social networks or talk about ways to prevent cyberbullying with students.
The first tool is created by Class Tools.net. According to the website,
Use “Fakebook” to chart the plot of a book, the development of a character, a series of historical events, the debates and relationships between people, and so on!
If students are sharing too much information or studying a particular novel, fake Facebook pages could be a great resource to help students make connections to complex literary elements or understand an issue from a particular point of view.
A second tool is My Fake Wall. My Fake Wall is similar in that you can create fake Facebook pages. Bored and thinking, “I wonder what Franklin. D. Roosevelt or Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”, you can do just that. Here is Franklin D. Roosevelt’s (FDR) page displaying conversations with his ‘friends and family members’. On FDR’s page, you can also see his pictures posted here on his fake Facebook page. Perhaps you would like to see what Cinderella really thought of riding off in that white carriage. You can eavesdrop on Cinderella’s conversations with her Fairy Godmother or Prince Charming on her fake Facebook page. This site was originally created for entertainment purposes but has caught on and is being used in classrooms. What a great way for students to write, be creative and find their voice through learning activities using fake Facebook pages!
A final resource is a Google doc template created by Derrick Waddell.You can read more about this project he implemented with his students in this blog post. This template was created using Google Drawing using text boxes for students to allow them to the permission to add biographical information, images, points of interest on a world map and share status updates of the historical figure. Richard Byrne, who is the author of the ‘Free Technology for Teachers’ blog, wrote several blog posts about using fake Facebook pages, including My Fake Wall and the Google doc template.