Monday, December 7, 2009

While The Kids Were Away... The Teachers Tweeted


During our last professional development day about a month ago some of our teachers had a chance to get an overview of Twitter. Today we took it to the next step - full immersion.

We utilized twtpoll to decide on a topic for our Twitter session. The topic of choice was - What are the biggest stumbling blocks to technology integration and how can we move beyond them? While we had some great comments on the question, there were also a few other worthwhile benefits of the exercise. Teachers got a chance to see how Twitter can be used as a tool for collaboration both with colleagues and with students. In addition, we were fortunate to have members of my Professional Learning Network (PLN) on Twitter add their input. These folks from Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Boston, and Vancouver showed how quickly we can connect and support like-minded educators anywhere on the planet.

For me, the day was the best PD Day yet. While it might not impact our school dramatically tomorrow, I think it did set the stage for things to come. BHS staff members showed that they are open to new ways of doing business. The day also reaffirmed the fact that we are fortunate to have teachers in Burlington who are not afraid to try new things and put themselves out there publicly while doing so.

A few of the 212 tweets from today that are worth repeating (and re-tweeting) -
  1. We (the staff) are a huge stumbling block. We get complacent that we don't need this "new" stuff when it is exactly what we do need!
  2. We need to be willing to embrace the new, not only because it is "new," but also it need to be beneficial/practicable
  3. Sometimes I need to be forced out of my comfort zone, spending time during staff development doing things like this is helpful.
I learned a lot from the thoughtful tweets of our staff members. In my estimation, it was the most substantive conversation that we have had as a staff in my three years at BHS. Thanks to all and I look forward to what is ahead!


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