Twitter is the simplest system available to interact with the web and share resources. Twitter is built into the iPad’s operating system and so an account allows you to share any photo, website or resource immediately without fuss. Its system is the opposite to Facebook and expects you to operate numerous accounts for different purposes. Once you have something to share, the iPad will allow you to pick which account to Tweet with and thus which group will receive it. Below are 3 account ideas for how iPad teachers can get the most from Twitter.
@EDUCATOR – Tweet as an Educator
The first account is your ‘Educator’s’ account (mine’s @EduWells) with which you interact with other teachers and share resources. This is the account you build your personal learning network with and discuss matters and ideas with other educators. Here’s a list of the benefits and uses for this account:
- Follow other like-minded teachers doing exciting things.
- Follow the world leaders in education to inspire your pedagogy and approach to teaching.
- Ask teachers directly how they achieved success in their classroom.
- Share your own teaching resources and inspire others.
- Share photos of good practice and successes in your classroom.
- Share useful websites, video links that have inspired you.
- Follow your subject’s multiple hashtags such as #EngChat for English teachers.
- Follow the weekly chat hours for teachers in your geographical area or school subject such as #EdChatNZ for New Zealand teachers or #1to1TeChat for 1 to 1 device teachers.
@TEACHER – Tweet as a classroom teacher
Create an account for your classroom activities with your students. Use this for quick, live sharing of photos and and resources to the kids you teach. It’s important to remember that it’s available to the whole world but can be useful for creating a live news feed of the work going on in your classroom. This account is separate to your professional connections so as to not annoy other teachers with day-to-day classroom activity. Here’s a list of classroom uses:
- Take photos of good student work during any day. Sets example to others.
- Share a new resource or website discovered during the day for students to try or read.
- Share websites and video links for class preparation and future lessons.
- A Dropbox account allows you to instantly share links to your files too. Great for those last minute things you forgot to pre-upload.
- Senior students can use this account to ask extra questions directly after a lesson either publicly or privately.
- A class or topic #Hashtag can instantly create a discussion group.
- Senior classes can set up small group accounts with which they can easily blog their progress with all 4 or 5 students logged-in and sharing their team’s project.
@Dept – Tweet as a Department or School
This is something I’m just setting up now. All the staff in my department (15 Tech teachers) can now publish the successes as a department. This works well for many schools but I think it’s going to be useful to present my subject of Technology as a team effort and as such, create a stream of examples for both the students and the staff to see. It will be important though to make staff aware of issues regarding privacy, spam and general good social media conduct.
Here’s the list of ideas so far:
- All colleagues get to see best practice within the same department / school. This is great for starting professional conversations in the staffroom.
- Parents can follow if they have their own account or just view the account’s web page to see great work completed or in progress,
- Students get to see what’s going on in your area of the school and this helps future choices of subjects and careers.
- The best work in one classroom can inspire those next door.
- Announcements that effect more than one class can be given using this account. Good for trips and deadlines and last minute changes.
The whole iPad is now designed to be the perfect management tool for organising these 3 streams of information as you go through your day. Activity on one account can influence what you do with the others. The Twitter system is simple and a great start for those new to iPadding or professional use of social media. It doesn’t have the considered organisation of running a website or blog but for minute-by-minute live updates and interaction with like-minded individuals, it’s perfect! Connect your accounts within the iPad’s settings and connect your teaching with the world.
Here’s the summary Poster (PNG links to PDF with links)