1. Identify your goals
I "backward designed" this activity by identifying how I was going to assess it and what outcomes I wanted to achieve. My former colleague @lelises and my sister @senoritaalopez collaborated with me to create a Facebook rubric. I began with a rubric because I wanted to incorporate Facebook as a formative assessment. On a weekly basis I wanted my students to share authentic newspaper sites,links,photos, current events and their views/opinions in the target language as well as interact with their classmates. I knew this activity could be both presentational and interpersonal. Ask yourself what "understanding" would you like your students to walk away with.
After the Facebook rubric was created I spoke with my school principal @mskweldon. She supported my use of Facebook in the classroom and gave me the thumbs up. She did advise me to create a permission slip for parents. I distributed the slips to 85 students and had one parent phone call. The conversation ended with her thanking me for my progressive methods.
Last year I created private Facebook groups for each of my classes. I invited students to join the group. Facebook "updated" their groups and the group posts were arranged by most recent shared posts instead of chronological order. This year I created a public Facebook page for my AP Spanish class. All posts are in chronological order.
Students write to me on Facebook all the time. Of course I love to respond only in Spanish!
5. Invite a class from around the world
Take Facebook a step further and invite a class that speaks your target language. Last year I skyped with a class in La Coruña, Spain. I wanted those students to join our Facebook group but unfortunately their school year ended the beginning of May and the teacher in Spain also seemed a little hesitant with the idea. This year I definitely plan to incorporate students from a class we skype with as soon as I find a teacher from a Spanish speaking country with students 16 - 18 years of age. I am eager to start this!