Friday, 27 February 2015

How Do You Use Twitter?

In the words of a dear friend:
"I do, very much, love my job. You are challenged, inspired, frustrated, intrigued, entertained, flustered, provoked, humbled and more….and that’s all within an hour!"
(Thank you Katie Havelberg.)

So, I'm really frustrated to been put back on the bench by my doctor. I want to be at school. I miss my kiddos and my colleagues. 

One colleague I particularly miss, because she moved school this year, is Aimee Lipczyk. Yesterday she tweeted that she was talking to her class about the benefits of Twitter and called for people to chime in.  I don't know how her lesson went, but with the plethora of ways to use Twitter in the classroom I can imagine.  

Twitter, like most social media platforms, seems to polarise people.  Love or hate, there is no middle ground.  There are no prizes for guessing on which side of the fence I fall.  So following the mini twitter discussion prompted by Aimee, I did a bit of digging to find what other people are using Twitter for in their classrooms.

Here are 28 of  some of my favourite uses - some of which I use, others new to me (but will probably show up in our learning space in the near future):

  1. Networking with other classes.
  2. Sharing on the spot learning with parents (and the world).
  3. Live tweeting excursions or incursions. 
  4. Connecting with authors.
  5. Microblogging 'aha' moments.
  6. Using hashtags to take learning deeper.
  7. Summarising a lesson's main point in 140 characters or less.
  8. Becoming politically active.
  9. Using hashtags to facilitate research.
  10. Sharing student/class blog updates.
  11. Comparing global differences.
  12. Finding a class for Mystery Skype.
  13. Following the news.
  14. Twitterchats
  15. Creating a class Twitter newspaper with interesting retweets/#hashtags
  16. Building a sense of community.
  17. Running social action projects like #Socktober
  18. Asking for expert opinions.
  19. Connecting with professionals.
  20. Writing serialised stories or poems.
  21. Using a hashtag to compile resources.
  22. Sending out inspiration into the world.
  23. Hooking up with other classes around the world and using Google Earth. 
  24. Shout out to the teacher's network for authentic data to share with students about current topic of learning.
  25. Twitterpolls.
  26. Keeping a research diary.
  27. Making friends! 
  28. Being involved in challenges like #Mathsphotoaday
A word cloud of these 28 ideas. Fascinating to see where the emphasis lies isn't it? 

How do YOU use Twitter with your class?

Note: @the67VRPs is our class twitter account.  (Please feel free to follow us.) I run it through tweet deck on MY laptop and always check it carefully before mirroring it to our TV so that I can be sure of the content/contacts etc.   The kiddos devise their own tweets from the account and name them so that if it's a direct conversation with a student from another class it can be tracked.   

This relates to the following Australian Professional Standards for Teachers...
Standard 4 Create and maintain safe and supportive learning environments
Standard 6 Engage in professional learning 
Standard 7 Engage professionally with colleagues, parents/carers and the community

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