One of the best ways to connect with other educators is through Twitter. I know what you’re thinking, “Isn’t Twitter just for college kids and Kardashian fans?” Well, in part, yes. However, Twitter is also home to a rapidly-growing professional learning network of educators. Educational leaders, teachers, schools, and ed tech companies around the globe are gaining followers and sharing their ideas through tweets.
I created my professional twitter account just 8 months ago and it has been one of the best collaborative professional development tools I’ve found. I’ve followed the growth of my favorite tech companies like GoNoodle and Seesaw, connected with amazing educators around the world, and participated in professional development via Twitter Chats.
Still not sold? Here’s 3 BIG reasons why you should give Twitter a try:
1. Grow your Professional Learning Network.
We all share ideas with our teammates and coworkers within our school. But, what if you could learn from and share ideas with teachers all around the globe? Twitter instantly connects you to educational leaders, bloggers, and classroom teachers who are passionate about what they do. By following their profiles, you will see photos of their lessons, links to their blog posts, and tweets about their area of educational expertise. To take things further, I HIGHLY recommend participating in a Twitter Chat to share ideas, problems, and solutions to issues in a 21st century classroom.
2. Be the first to hear about new tech and teaching strategies.
Twitter is one of the best forms of free promotion out there. A single tweet can reach hundreds of thousands of followers in a second, and I’m telling you, YOU want to be one of those people. GoNoodle uses twitter to highlight real teachers doing great things in their classroom. Seesaw uses Twitter to showcase lesson ideas and ways real teachers are using their app in the classroom. Ozobot uses Twitter to advertise their new products and even host giveaways to get them into your hands now. I’ve even seen some companies use their account to help teachers troubleshoot their app or provide suggestions to make it better. In an ever-changing world, we need to stay up to date on what works for kids.
3. Promote the great things happening in your classroom.
With all the bad press public education often gets, it is important that we continue to showcase all the wonderful things happening in our classrooms everyday. Since the newspapers aren’t doing it, it is up to us, the teachers, to show off our hard work. My school, like many others, has taken this on by creating our own hashtag. Any one of our teachers who posts updates from her classroom, student work, or dates of school events will use #lgdscholars to tag their tweet. Then, anyone who searches our school’s hashtag can see all of the great things happening at our school without having to search individual teacher or classroom accounts. Parents and community partners will be able to see photos of our scholars in actions and read about upcoming events in a simple click and scroll.
In less than a year, Twitter has easily become my favorite social media tool. And amazingly, it’s the only one I use solely for work. Go figure! Liven up your professional learning network and get connected with Twitter. I promise you, it’s worth it!
Follow me @KopkasKinders! Let’s connect!