Monday, January 13, 2014

Technological Tip: Twitter... no, seriously

Every teacher and pretty much every adult, and it's probably safe to say "every American" at this point understands social media - a bunch of people posting "selfies" in various places, thereby ruining any chance for future political stature.

However, if you are a person who likes to learn, and specifically a teacher, then you really should consider using Twitter, but for the right reasons (as opposed to the vain macaque monkey in previous link). Don't worry, not only will I tell you how, but ... no, I'll just tell you.

Here's your twitter:
Imagine you have a hobby, a question, a concern, or really any kind of interest. Just for the sake of having an example, let's say you read the book Drive, (and you really should read that book), by Daniel Pink and you loved it. So you have the thought, "that book was informative and amazing. I would love to learn more and/or see examples of what he talks about."

In a pre-Twitter world, you can do one of two things: 1. You can keep google searching "Daniel Pink" or "Interesting events inspired by Daniel Pink's Drive" every day, sort through all the links and occasionally find interesting links. This takes too much time. 2. You can hire a secretary and say, "your job is to keep me posted on Daniel Pink, what he's up to, and keep current about how his book is changing the world." This is too expensive.

What if, though, option two were possible? Not only that, but instead of hiring a secretary who may or may not know her Pink, you hire @DanielPink himself, for the price of free? You see, that's what Twitter is. Daniel Pink posts all the time, and because his full time job is to "keep the Pink in Pink", he's doing your searching for you and delivering the results to your doorstep (twitterfeed).

You don't have to post anything, ever. You can just make an account, pick the people you want to learn from, then watch them post the kinds of things you want to read. It's that easy. Furthermore, in the education world, twitter is huge. If you want to swap ideas, read articles, be inspired, learn about cool websites, listen to everybody bicker about Common Core and Charter Schools, twitter is literally updating itself on these things every minute. If I were to tweet my argument of twitter, it would be:

"If you use twitter, you can effectively have read every non-fiction book before it hits stores and know every idea before it's presented in a staff meeting."

Take my word for it. But, if you don't, listen to these guys say the same, maybe even with images:

Twitter "a useful tool for teachers"
Top Reasons Why Teachers and Educators use Twitter 
Digitally Speaking/Why Teachers Should Try Twitter
Why Twitter is a Teacher's Best Tool
10 Amazing Ways For Teachers & Tutors To Use Twitter In Education

To get you started, here are my recommended folks to follow:

@arneduncan - US Secretary of Education. His tweets are actually kind of boring, but probably important nonetheless.
@DanielPink - that's the last time I type his name in this post.
@web20classroom - this dude tweets about education all day long. He has a blog, radio show (I think), Top 50 Innovators in Education and is all about helping out the teachers of cyberspace via #edchat
@dawblack - this guy takes both teaching and tweeting seriously
@Larryferlazzo - 32, 902 followers can't be wrong.
@mqzoeller - that's me! Threw it in the middle to look less arrogant. I use twitter for reading, therefore only post jokes 90% of the time, but also links to this blog.
@paultough - yes, it's THEE Paul Tough, and he posts articles related to his educational best-seller all the time
@johnharrington - this is my friend from college. He works for Twitter. I just thought it'd be ironic.

If you've got any others that should also be on this list, please add to the comment section. There is more that can be done on twitter than I mentioned here, but it's enough to get started.
Give it a try, and see what you can learn.

1 comment:

  1. Here are some additional Lutheran education accounts that you may wish to follow: @dgrice, @rjacklin, @_alexalbers_ , @LcmsTeach, @jessicaraba, @strahanlarsen , @DebHeiden, @klheureux, @winterstein13, @Angie_Wass, @espanateacher, @gilmorekendra, @alhelmy, @neumanjb, @kevcreutz, @rwschumacher, @webbnf, @atomashewsky, @mattbergholt, @tjschu, @gailpotratz, @bdean1000, @coachburk, @jsommermeyer, @jorrflv