Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Stop Searching

When I think about what makes twitter so unique, I think about a quote in the video "Social Media Revolution 2." If you have not seen the video, you can watch it below.

Here is quote that I think explains one of the values of twitter:
"We no longer search for the news, the news finds us... We will no longer search for products and services, they will find us via social media"

Educators no longer have to search completely on their own for tools, resources, and information for their classroom. Twitter is a constant stream of valuable resources, links, tools, conversations, collaboration, and encouragement that find their way onto a teacher's desktop. It is amazing how great resources will "find you" through twitter. It has been just over a year since I joined twitter and I have learned so much about how technology can be used as a very effective tool of instruction. (If you do not know how twitter works, watch this VIDEO)

I have heard many teachers say they do not have time for Twitter, however, Twitter is completely user controlled. Sometimes I feel weighted down by my email. I have to check my email and reply when necessary. It's not that way with twitter. You can follow who you want, send out tweets when you want, and read tweets when you want. People on twitter will place links in their tweets in order to share great tools that can be used in the classroom. Some of the amazing tools that I have learned about strictly because of twitter include voicethread, prezi, backchanneling, wikis, mind mapping, flickr, Skype, and diigo.

Most importantly, I have made many great connections with other educators all over the world. It's really all about the people. My PLN, or Personal Learning Network, is a group of educators on twitter who motivate, collaborate, encourage, and share with one another. I have about 900 people following me on twitter and I follow over 500 people myself. Just about every person in my PLN I probably would have had zero contact with if it were not for twitter. It really is a way to surround yourself with more quality, dedicated, and passionate colleagues.

Resources for teachers who are new to twitter
28 educators that you must follow

Tom Whitby explains the power of the PLN

Eric Sheninger Discusses the Emergence of Twitter in Education

Steve Anderson (@web20classroom) on Twitter


  1. I am not familiar with Tom Whitby, but I follow Eric Sheninger

    and Steven Anderson

    on Delicious. The resources they post and share are fantastic.

    I'm encouraged to learn more about Twitter. I have been one of those who "doesn't have the time" but it sounds like I should make time to stay connected with peers, colleagues and others in my field(s) of interest.

    Twitter sounds like it could be a valuable professional tool.

  2. excellent post - thanks for the information about twitter. I joined twitter and then sat around not knowing what to do =) I now have a better idea - thanks!

  3. WHOA!! I have a WHOLE new perspective on the power of Twitter! I had always just viewed it as another social networking tool. What an incredible resource for educators. I do see how staff development on Twitter would be HIGHLY benefical as I'm sure most folks just see it as I did. To know that teachers from around the world are collaborating via Twitter is awesome! Hmmmm...looks like I may need to look into this more for myself as I do not currently have a Twitter account. THANK YOU for this information!

  4. All of your videos were very helpful in helping me understand the benefits of twitter, Kevin! I have only ever seen it used in menial manners and had never considered the resources benefits it can provide.

    I certainly fall under the "doesn't have time" category. I feel as if I barely find time to check my multiple mail boxes, keep up with the discussion posts(blogs), friends blogs, and then normal phone and person to person communication that I have no more slots for technological communication. I have I've also not looked into it too much because I don't text :/

    THere are so many different ways to gain information twitter, blogs, subscribing to e-news (eduweek etc...), delicious. It seems to be me that we do not have to be connected to all of them as much as we should choose the ones that work the best for our styles --this is reference to finding sources not using "in" the classroom. It seems to me that if you used every single one of them then you would be spending all your time checking them and not preparing lessons or spending time with your family. What do you think? Am I just coming at it from a weird angle because I'm so busy in a bunch of different directions right now? (Those of you who are teaching right now) Do you use all of them or just some of them?


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