Over the last couple of years, one tool has helped me the most in my professional development as a teacher. This tool may not be viewed as a positive tool by many, but it has shown to have great potential. Twitter is the one professional development tool that I do not want to leave behind and is the main one that I try to help others learn about first.
- Hashtags are ways that we can tag tweets about certain topics. If I wanted to learn about technology in education, I would search for the #edtech hashtag. If I wanted to connect with other teachers who flip their classroom, that would be the #flipclass hashtag. A list of very useful tags can be found at http://www.cybraryman.com/edhashtags.html
- There are weekly chats about certain topics with people from all over the world. Some topics will be very specific about content or location, but everyone can participate or just watch. There is a ton of information and ideas you can get by participating in one of these chats. Link to a list of the weekly chats.
- You can make connections with so many people on Twitter. The purpose of Twitter is the social networking that takes place. I have connected with professionals in the field of science, heads of various education agencies and teachers from all over the world. When I started looking into the flipped classroom, standards based grading, and competency based grading; it was Twitter that really helped me get the resources and ideas to be successful.
- Cybraryman has a great list of resources all about using Twitter as an educator. http://www.cybraryman.com/hashtags.html
- October is “Connected Educator Month” which will be a great time to start connecting with other educators across the country if you haven’t already.
- Remember, anything you post online can be seen by everyone. Make sure you follow your professional guidelines. Do not post anything that can get you in trouble professionally or ethically.
Video about educators discussing why it is important to be a connected educator.