I am the Assistant Director of Education for the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District, a sessional instructor at Queen's University in Ontario and a member of the Advisory Board for the EdCan Network (formerly Canadian Education Association).
I am a former Secondary School Principal in Northwestern Ontario, for four years on secondment with the Ontario Ministry of Education as the Provincial Lead for Technology Enabled Learning and Teaching, a proud former member of OSAPAC, co-lead of OSSEMOOC, and former VP of ECOO.
As we work through this week, we are looking at a digital literacy skill called curation.
Briefly stated, curation allows us to share resources that we feel are valuable to our practice. When others curate resources, the wide stream of information on the web is filtered for your personal needs.
In order to get the idea behind “curation” as an important digital literacy skill, we ask you to refer to and read – from our November series – Day 9: Beginning to Share Content,
As a challenge, consider the kind of information you are looking for in your professional life, and the kind of information that you would be able to share back to others with similar needs and interests.
As education professionals, building community with parents and others is so important.
We need to go where people are if we want to share with them. As well, we (as a school or district) need to consider how we are creating and building our positive digital footprint in the online environment
How do we use social media sites such as Twitter to help us share with community?
We have collected stories to help you consider how you might use these tools in your context.
No matter what environment you are in, there are social protocols to figure out and abide by. The same goes for our online communities.
Twitter for education has protocols (or “norms”) that are not normally stated overtly, but that are important for maintaining professional relationships on the platform. In the list below, we have shared some of those protocols. Do you have more to add? Please feel free to share in the comments.
In general, it is important to remember that when education professionals are using Twitter to self-direct their personal professional learning, they want to find value in the time they are able to spend online.
Should I have different accounts for personal and professional tweeting?
This is a question that has been pondered on social media in the past.
Consider the purpose of your Twitter account. If you are tweeting with your class or school, you may want to consider an account for that role. If you are tweeting as an education professional separate from a specific group of students, you might think about it differently.
If you were at a social event with your peers, would you be the loud and obnoxious one in the room, constantly talking about yourself and how wonderful you are?
Don’t be that person on Twitter!
Of course everyone wants you to share, particularly on Twitter chats as you are answering the questions. However, something YOU have written on your blog is NOT the answer to every question! And while we are using capitals, capital letters mean “shouting” online, so you do not need to use them in all of your tweets!
It’s more important to think of Twitter as a place where you can add value rather than a place where you need to be noticed.
4. Respect the filters!
There is a massive amount of information flowing on Twitter. Learning to set up filters so that you can sort through that information and find things that are valuable to your practice is an important skill. Please respect the filters people are using and avoid tagging people on your photos and on your posts unless they have specifically asked for the information.
5. Self-proclaimed “Twitter Pros” usually are not – Pros that is!
Be a critical thinker about advice. Lurk on Twitter and watch. Just because someone claims to be a “pro” and know it all, doesn’t mean they actually do. Anyone can pretend to be anything on Twitter. Have a critical eye to what is true, and teach your students to do the same.
6. Relax and Be Yourself
You will connect with many wonderful people on Twitter. Many of these people will become your friends as you learn together, and you will meet many of them face-to-face. Authentic relationships do thrive online, for many of the same reasons they thrive in f2f environments.
Be who you are, share generously, give more than you receive.
What suggestions can you add to this list? We welcome your suggestions in the blog comments.
This week, we asked folks in the @OSSEMOOC PLN to share a few examples of what they learn on Twitter.
Educators are very busy people. We think it is important to demonstrate the types of connections you can make very quickly, and the just-in time learning you can experience by leveraging your Twitter PLN.
How can we manage our Tweets on a mobile device? Here is an outline of how to use Hootsuite.
Today we are modelling the idea of using new tools for our work. All of our previous screencasts have been recorded using a free online tool – ScreenCast-O-Matic (in the professional version that currently costs $15.00 per year).
Today’s screencast was recorded on a mobile device using Explain Everything, a tool that is popular for student use. It is our first video made with this tool, so it isn’t perfect! But this is how we all learn!
Twitter chats are becoming hugely popular among educators.
Twitter chats normally last for an hour. Questions for discussion are usually posted in advance and often there are 6 questions – one every 10 minutes. Participants post their answers to the questions and then engage in conversations with each other until the next question is posted.
Twitter chats allow for reflective practice and engaging in sharing and conversation with educators from around the world. Educators report that they get new ideas and new resources about education topics they are passionate about.
There are now Twitter chats for nearly every aspect of education, for example #edchat (international and fast-paced), #tlap (Teach Like a Pirate), #digcit (digital citizenship), #ntchat (new teachers), #satchat (Saturday morning education leadership chat), #ce15l (connected educators – What is Learning Anyway?).
Thanks to Brandon Zoras (@brandonzoras) who has demonstrated participation in Twitter chats in this screencast.
Here is the calendar of education chats that was mentioned in the video. There are many local Twitter chats not on this list, so watch your favourite Twitter hashtags for more chats, and retweet the announcements of chats to your followers.
#OSSEMOOC will host a Twitter chat about Twitter for Professional Learning on November 3, at 8 p.m. ET.
Today we have a few resources for you to explore as we begin to think about how we will use our Twitter account to share back to our PLN. The third week of this course is all about curation, so we will address the topic in much more detail at that time.
Today we will look at the mechanics of sharing with colleagues on Twitter.
Thanks to Brandon Zoras (@brandonzoras) for sharing another awesome screencast to help guide you in your learning.
1) As we work toward becoming connected professional learners on Twitter, we need to consider the “big picture”, and how our new ways of learning will impact our work with our students. How does this article on Education 3.0 impact your thinking about becoming a connected educator? If this resonates with you, how can you share it on Twitter with your PLN?
2) What sites do you visit online for professional learning? You may want to read some of the blogs written by Ontario educators. The links can be found on the OSSEMOOC website. As you read, what resonates with you? What would you like to share with others? Is there an easy way to share the blog on Twitter? Can you add the Twitter handle of one of the educators on our class Twitter list to the Tweet? Add the #OSSEMOOC hashtag so others following this MOOC will see your tweet.
For many more resources on this topic, please explore this OSSEMOOC post from last year.