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Why Use Twitter in Teaching and Learning?
This list 50 Ideas on Using Twitter for Education was originally posted by Carol Cooper-Taylor in her blog onAug 22 2008. It was based on a list by Chris Brogan - 50 ideas for using Twitter in Business
- Build an account and immediate start using Twitter Search to listen for your name, the name of your school/college/poly/uni, and words that relate to your space. (Listening always comes first.)
- Add a picture of yourself. People want to see you. What type of picture - up to you, there is a whole load of diversity our there on this.
- Don’t just tweet about yourself, talk to other people about their interests, too.
- Point out interesting things happening in your classroom (whatever from that takes).
- Share links to neat things in your institution and/or community.
- Don’t get stuck in the apology loop. Be helpful instead.
- Be wary of always promoting your stuff. Your fans (aka mother) will love it. But hopefully you are reaching out to others as well.
- Promote your students’ stories, but be careful to maintain anonymity, particularly with kids.
- Be human.
- Talk about non-education stuff too, there is life outside your institution.
- Instead of answering the question, “What are you doing?”, answer the question, “What has your attention?”
- Have more than one twitterer at your institution. People can quit. People take vacations. It’s nice to have a variety.
- When promoting a blog post, ask a question or explain what’s coming next, instead of just dumping a link.
- Ask questions. Twitter is GREAT for getting opinions.
- Follow interesting people. If you find someone who tweets interesting things, see who she follows, and follow her.
- Tweet about other people’s stuff. Make you human
- When you DO talk about your stuff, make it useful. Give advice, blog posts, pictures, etc.
- Share the human side of your institution. If you’re bothering to tweet, it means you believe social media has value for human connections. Point us to pictures and other human things.
- Don’t toot your own horn too much.
- Or, if you do, try to balance it out by promoting the heck out of others, too.
- You don’t have to read every tweet. Some people follow thousands so they can’t be reading everything
- You don’t have to reply to every @ tweet directed to you (try to reply to some, but don’t feel guilty).
- Use direct messages for 1-to-1 conversations if you feel there’s no value to Twitter at large to hear the conversation.
- Use services like Twitter Search to make sure you see if someone’s talking about you. Try to participate where it makes sense.
- 3rd party clients like Tweetdeck and Twhirl make it a lot easier to manage Twitter. I use TwitterFox add in for Firefox.
- If you tweet all day you will not be popular with your colleagues or your boss.
- If you tweet all day your students will let you know their displeasure. (see 24)
- Learn quickly to use the URL shortening tools like TinyURL and all the variants. It helps tidy up your tweets.
- If someone says you’re using twitter wrong, forget it. It’s an opt out society. They can unfollow if they don’t like how you use it.
- Commenting on others’ tweets, and retweeting what others have posted is a great way to build community.
- Twitter takes up time.
- Twitter takes you away from teaching.
- Without a strategy, it’s just typing.
- There are other ways to do this.
- It doesn’t replace face-to-face (who said it does).
- Twitter is buggy and not education-ready.
- Twitter is just for nerds not for teachers.
- Twitter’s only a few million people. (only)
- Twitter doesn’t replace email.
- Twitter opens the institution up to more criticism and griping.
- Twitter helps one organize great, instant meetups (tweetups).
- Twitter works swell as an opinion poll.
- Twitter can help direct student’s attention to good things.
- Twitter in the classroom helps people build an instant “backchannel.”
- Twitter breaks news faster than other sources, often (especially if the news impacts online denizens).
- Twitter gives institutions a glimpse at what status messaging can do for an organization. Remember presence in the 1990s?
- Twitter brings great minds together, and gives everyone daily opportunities to learn (if you look for it, and/or if you follow the right folks).
- Twitter gives your critics a forum, but that means you can study them.
- Twitter helps with staff development, find other teachers.
- Twitter can augment parent feedback.
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, May 13 2009, 8:46 AM EDT
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