Obviously I’m on Facebook already and use it every day. (I had a Facebook page for my library, too.) You will NEVER see me on Instagram or SnapChat, not even for this Module. (I’m not photogenic—somehow a camera captures my worst features glaringly well.) However, I can see wonderful benefits of using Instagram and/or SnapChat for the library to promote reading and record student activities. (In fact, if I’d had a smartphone back then, I’d have taken a lot more library pics than I did!) So that means I chose Twitter for this Module’s task.
I’ve had a Twitter account for a couple years but never did anything with it. Honestly, I just didn’t “get it.” To explore it for this Module, I used Jennifer’s “Twitter for Teachers and Students” course in Blended Education that I’d purchased for my summer learning before I found out about this course. It sure was valuable for this module, and I now see the advantages of Twitter.
I’ve already benefited from using Twitter by discovering and following many education- and library-related Tweeters, including those whose blogs I already subscribe to—they tweet great ideas and websites not in their blogs. I really like the currency of Twitter, especially tweets when an educational conference is happening!
One of Jennifer’s comments in the Teacher’s Guide really stuck with me, about using social media “to make relevant curricular connections. Any time you can connect your content to social media concepts, you’re helping students learn it better.” (p184) Many of our students are more adept at typing on phones than on keyboards, so for over-age-13 students, Twitter would be a great way to have them respond to lessons and assignments, especially through a chat. I appreciated Jenn’s suggestion to use TweetChat which would make responses move more quickly. (I’ve tried to follow my Texas librarians Twitter chats in the past with little success and this tool will make it so much easier for me to be involved.)
I look forward to hearing what the rest of my JumpStart classmates have to say about using social media tools in the classroom, although as a middle school librarian I’d probably only be able to use them with 8th graders. (When I was still working, my school district had a wonderful email & social media service to use with under-age-13 students in grades K-7; just before I retired they’d adapted it to iPads, so I wonder if now they’ve added phone apps for their Twitter-like tools.)
Twitter is very seductive and I let it consume way too much of my time—like it’s taken 4 hours just to write these paragraphs because I kept switching over to Twitter to see what was happening and then got distracted reading the tweet recommendations!
The link to my Twitter page is https://twitter.com/barupatx and below are screenshots of what I practiced.
An original tweet from me.
Retweeting someone else’s content.
Replying to someone’s tweet.
The tweet window.
The view in my Tweets and Replies tab.
I decided to set up a new Twitter account just for educational uses and keep barupatx for personal use. My new Twitter page—which I’m just starting to develop—is https://twitter.com/barupaedu.