For me, Twitter is a powerful educational tool, not only because it allows me to connect with other educational professionals and expand my ever-growing PLN (Personal Learning Network), but because it also provides me an opportunity to reflect and question my own teaching practice. So, what is Twitter and how can it be used to become more #connectED?
What is Twitter
Twitter is a free online social networking and microblogging service. Twitter allows its users to communicate by sending short messages (up to 140 characters), also known as ‘tweets’. Twitter also allows you to post images, videos and links to other websites making it a perfect tool for sharing ideas and resources for the classroom.
Benefits of Twitter for Educators
At first, I was a little sceptical about Twitter - assuming it was only suitable for celebrity gossip and discussing what you had for breakfast. However, having used Twitter for several years, I now see the huge potential of Twitter to support teaching and learning!
By far the biggest impact Twitter has had on my teaching practice is the hours saved in planning. Every day I come across new resources to use in my teaching and, like many other teachers on Twitter, some of these resources I've used the very next day!
"I saw something on Twitter last night and used it in the classroom next morning." - @Edubloke
As well as helping me find lots of great resources to use in my classroom, Twitter has also introduced me to new ideas and methodologies, for example, flipped / blended learning, growth mindset and Project Based Learning (PBL) - to name but a few. In fact, many teachers are starting to use Twitter to take control of their Continued Professional Development (CPD).
“My teaching had become quite stale but Twitter has changed that - having used twitter for a year, I've been introduced to different approaches/resources through discussions/links and being connected to great educators.” - Angela Goodman (@goodman_ang)
However, for me, the biggest draw for using Twitter has to be the ability to connect with amazing educators from all around the world and to share best practice!
“In the last 18 months, as a result of using twitter, I have connected with more teachers than in the 10+yrs prior. Twitter has also introduced me to TeachMeets & edu networks.” - Jenna Lucas (@JennaLucas81)
Introducing the #connectED Twitter challenge.
Challenge 1: Follow a teacher on Twitter
Challenge 2: Join in an education Twitter chat.
Challenge 3: Host a Twitter chat.
- How to stay safe when using twitter - Tips for staying safe on-line when using Twitter.
- It’s all about the hashtag: Essential #EduChats for Teachers - List of education hashtags by subject.
- Tips for taking part in Twitter chats - Tips for taking part in Twitter edu chats.
- Tips for hosting Twitter chats - Tips for hosting a Twitter edu chat.
- How to Storify a chat
- How to schedule Tweets
- How to use Twitter lists - Lowdown on Twitter lists