Twitter – not just for celebrity nonsense anymore.
I never thought I was cool enough to be on Twitter. Twitter, to me, was this place where whitty people documented their lives. I’ve never really been characterized as someone with good one-liners and let’s face it, Twitter is the ultimate one-liner experience.
And now to be a bit nostalgic…here was my first tweet from March 14, 2012
(I’m disappointed I didn’t add #firsttweet or any hashtag for that matter – what a rookie!)
With that said, I feel like teachers have taken over Twitter, and people are noticing. Twitter has become a go-to place for me to get new ideas, find new resources, get advice, and just see what other teachers are doing out there.
Now there are some of you that are scared of social media – you don’t want to attach your name to anything that could be online. I challenge you like I challenge students – GET CONNECTED and change the face of social media. Social media is one place that you can make an impact; get yourself to go viral by doing something good. I know it’s not that easy and there are legitimate concerns, but we need to stay relevant as educators. I’m not saying jump on every social media site your kids are on, because, let’s face it, most kids have moved on past Twitter. What I am saying is get connected somewhere and Twitter is a great place to start. You control your digital footprint – you also control what you get out of social media.
Here are my 4 reasons for using Twitter:
- Professional Development – and it’s free: Join a Twitter chat (more info on that below); engage with other educators across the globe; deepen your teaching
- Keep parents informed – our students are on Twitter and, as a result, many of our parents are on Twitter (if you have a child on Twitter, you should be on Twitter, too). Emails are too long, Tweets, are not! Share snippets of what your classroom is like.
- Collaborate – give your students a new audience by making connections with other classrooms. Just because your student may not be 13, you can still use Twitter WITH them. We all know that when students have a new audience, their work looks different.
- Practice Digital Citizenship – start modeling how we want our students to interact with social media – they really do watch what we do.
Here are some places to get started with Twitter:
- Not on Twitter? Start an account. If you want it to focus on your professional realm, sign up with your school email.
- Already have a handle? Start tweeting – things you’re doing in the classroom, things you’re learning about education, a great resource you’ve found. Add a hashtag (#d303learns, #d303pride, #d303google, etc. so that others in the district see it)
- A Twitter pro? Participate in a Twitter chat – a virtual conversation around a topic. There are chats going on every day, check out a calendar of chats here: Educational Twitter Chats
- Our #d303chat is the third Wednesday of every month from 7-8pm – last night we talked about innovation in the classroom. If you weren’t able to join us last night for our October #d303chat, you can access the transcript to see what we talked about: October #d303chat Storify
As always, feel free to get in touch with me if you want to learn more about Twitter!