Friday, October 30, 2009

Twitter - An Educational Resource You Should Not Dismiss

We spent some time during our Department Meeting yesterday exploring Twitter. While some out there think that it is a streamlined version of Facebook, there are growing number educators from all over the world sharing their ideas with one another through Professional Learning Networks (PLN's) that they have established on Twitter. While the traditional high school model is one where educators do not collaborate much within their own schools, thanks to modern technology, the new model is one where educators can collaborate with colleagues anywhere at anytime. The conversations are 24-7 and they are high-level cutting edge conversations about best practices.

So to get our Instructional Leadership Team started, I "tweeted" the following message to my PLN during the meeting: Showing my dept. heads twitter-Any advice on subject specific ideas or PLN's for them?

Within a couple of minutes, we received quite a few responses. Two of the most substantive responses came from phsprincipal (Dave Meister from Paris, Illinois) who pointed us to Twitter4Teachers, a site that has links to teachers from every level and every discipline and Tom Whitby (a Professor of English from Utah) who reminded me to introduce our group to The Educators PLN on Ning. These are just two of the amazing sites out there that provide today's teachers with up to the minute resources on almost any topic.

Another way to stay up to speed is to follow people who send out a list of top tweets, people like Larry Ferlazzo and Shell Terrell. Larry put out a list each month of the top tweets. Here is a link to his top tweets from October so you get an idea. Shell puts out a great post as well each week called What Did They Tweet. These great resources allow you to stay on top of the most relevant discussions happening on twitter.

Coming soon - Who are my top resources on the web and how do I follow them?

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