Twitter for teachers

I used to be quite convinced that twitter was something for people with nothing better to do than tell me what they were having for lunch.  It was only when I took part in the #beaumontteachmeet that I realised it actually provides a fantastic opportunity for teachers to share good practice.  I am still a relatively small-scale user of twitter, but I am certainly finding it immensely useful.  For example it was via twitter that I came across the “exit ticket” idea I posted here a couple of weeks ago: such a simple idea, but one I have found really useful in my own teaching (many thanks to @Kris_Boulton for that one!).

twitter 2

I’ve also learned that twitter provides an amazing support network for teachers.  A good example of this would be @BeyondLevels, a twitter account set up by the headmistress of a local primary school to help teachers rethink assessment in light of the removal of reporting by levels: it had nearly a 1,000 followers within a fortnight of its creation, all comparing notes on possible approaches; twitter has also provided an opportunity for @BeyondLevels to send out surveys to these teachers to get a snapshot of what the profession is thinking.

If all this has tweaked your interest and you’d like to know how can you make the most of twitter as a teacher, this short video from @ICTEvangelist provides a good outline:

If you now think twitter might just be worth a look, this blog by Keri-Lee Beasley and Louise Phinney gives some really useful tips on how teachers can get the most out of it.

If you’d like to take a look at the way I have been using twitter to share good stuff, my twitter address is @MisterBHayes.  I’ve set myself a few rules to make sure I don’t get carried away:

  • I never check my account more than once a day.
  • If I use an idea shared by somebody else, I always try to share an idea in return.
  • I avoid sharing any ideas I haven’t actually tried out myself, though I will retweet one I haven’t actually used on the basis that people can see who it originally came from.

There does appear to be a sort of twitter etiquette operating, but I have to confess I haven’t really got to grips with that yet.  Let me know if you have any good advice!  In the meantime, if you’re even more new to this than me, and worried about looking like a dunce, this may help [click on the image to enlarge it]:

twitter sheet

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